Athens, Ga. – An art exhibit exploring how fashion and clothing reflect the heart and shape identity will open in Tate Art Gallery on Monday, Feb. 19. Alterations is a display of clothing and accessories transformed into sculptural garments, designed to tell stories about identity, body image and self-esteem.
Artist Birgit Gehrt collaborated with participants in the Body Positive, a program for women and girls combating eating disorders. She listened to their stories and drew inspiration from their poetry to guide her while she created these pieces. According to Gehrt, “People, especially youth, are highly susceptible to and easily tormented by the whims of fashion, especially in relation to body size and cultural definitions of beauty.”
The display will include sculptures and altered garments such as “Worry Dolls,” “Candy Un-coated Sweatpants,” and “Dear Rebecca cocktail dress.” Attendees will be invited to respond to the exhibit in a scrapbook.
The Alterations exhibit is part of Everybody Get Up! month, which is dedicated to promoting healthy attitudes and behaviors about body image. Events this month include free yoga classes in Creswell, movies, a candlelight vigil and Fearless Friday, a no-diet day. These activities and the Alterations art exhibit are sponsored by University Health Center, FLY student organization, and the UGA Parents and Families Association.
The exhibit opening will be followed by a poetry reading at 7 p.m., and an introduction to artwork produced by a body image therapy group from the Eating Disorder Recovery Center of Athens. For more information about the Alterations exhibit, please see the Body Positive website at http://www.thebodypositive.org/.