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  • Detail of the 'Bras-Coupé' suit by Big Chief Demond Melancon

Material world: Inside Assemble’s experimental New Orleans fashion school

A new talent incubator inspired by the city's costume culture

In the latest issue of Crafts magazine, we go behind the scenes at the Material Institute, an experimental fashion school in New Orleans that draws on the city’s costume and streetwear cultures.

It was launched by Turner Prize-winning architecture and art collective Assemble and Tasmania's Museum of Old and New Art, which had already opened a music studio in the city. Staffed by craftspeople from around the world, including Mardi Gras Indian Big Chief Demond Melancon and fashion designers Faustine Steinmetz and Kenneth Ize, it aims to foster nascent talent and launch careers by offering free access to materials and teaching.

This video gives a glimpse of the students at work and an insight into what the Material Institute could mean for the city. Pick up the May/June issue of Crafts (No. 278) for the full story by Michael Patrick Welch

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