Crimson Rose O'Shea
Final MA project
The inspiration for my project was born out of the splendour of the Classical Chinese Opera. After securing an extraordinary opportunity to be backstage when the National China Peking Opera company prepared for their performance of The Warrior Women of Yang. I was captivated by the coming together of the opera’s ancient art forms, the rich and complex narratives, the opulence of the costumes, the textures and the dynamic array of colour that I experienced.
Particularly drawn to the head-ornaments I began to explore hair accessories in depth, drawing from an array of collections, including Royal Holloway and Pitt Rivers museum I delved deeply into the narratives and history of hair ornaments from around the world.
My research evolved into the creation of my own visuals, drawings, motifs, collages, patterns and textures that I then developed into prints across my collection. My final collection of fabrics evokes drama in colour, scale and form. It includes both printed and sculptural textiles. Embroidery, beading and couture embellishment also feature throughout the collection.
School of Design
MA Textiles, 2016
I find my inspiration for my work from many sources; travel, museums, private collections, literature, music, opera, the avant garde, the everyday. I am a collector of objects and experiences and I try to find ways to express my observations through my drawings, prints and creations. I am particularly interested in the museum and the ways in which as designers we can create our own taxonomies of design that can lead us to the creation of new material culture.
As a designer research is integral to my practice and I often draw inspiration from objects and artefacts that I feel a kind of personal affiliation with. As humans we love to collect beautiful things and because of the spectacular nature of the museum, a site wrapped up with entertainment and feelings of pleasure, it is natural that humans want to consume the objects that they encounter within it.
When we view an object, we continue to consume it, if not physically but metaphorically, seeing is owning. The feeling of coveting an object that we experience is partly a result of our consumption habits. We desire strongly to own the object because it helps us to affirm or express our self-identity. In the museum context the object is, however, physically out of reach and the chances of us owning it are slim, this elicits and exemplifies the feeling of coveting that we might experience.
The department store, as a coming together of material tangible goods with our own imagination, dreams and desires, mirrors the museum. Just as in the museum, viewing objects can take us on our own imaginative journeys. Objects elicit feelings of coveting because they have the power to connect the dream world and our imagination with the tangible every day.
- BA Fashion Design Womenswear, Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, 2011
- Womenswear Designer, Competition winner RCA / Monsoon collaboration Monsoon Accesorize, London June–September 2015; Womenswear Designer, One off pieces commissioned for editorial - Vogue, Dazed & Confused, Another Magazine, Hunger Magazine; Design internship, Diane Von Furstenberg, New York, January–April 2010; Design internship, John Galliano, Paris August–December 2009; Design assistant, Wes Gordon (on his final BA Central Saint Martin's collection), London September 2008–July 2009
- First Prize for outstanding use of colour, Society of Dyers 2015