Bate, Toni, Garland, Liz, Malik, Nadia and Sweeney, Clair (2015) Archive, Stage and Private Values: Textile, Dress and Costume. In: Intersections Conference 2015, 15th & 16th January 2015, Central School of Speech and Drama. (Unpublished)

The teaching team on the Costume with Textiles BA at the University if Huddersfield proposes a 20 minute panel comprising of three research project presentations which take different approaches to exploring and documenting the communication of meaning through dress in performance.

Although the three research projects focus individually on specific facets of costume and textiles, and use different creative and unusual methodologies to explore them, we have identified overlaps in the investigation of the historical, social, anthropological, physical and psychological aspects of cloth and costume design and making. The projects intersect at the point of their potential impact in higher education and consequent value for the performance industry in general, where the significance of the contribution of costume design in storytelling often still goes unrecognised. It is a noteworthy occurrence that for the first time in Western social history Costume Designers are beginning to become household names to audiences (such as Janie Bryant and Colleen Atwood), and the broad body of knowledge in these three projects together (from cloth creation to garment and character design and making to data collection and archiving) could at the same time impact upon and enhance the understanding in academia of the value of ‘costume’ as a burgeoning research area for which there is currently very little academic scholarship in existence, indeed, a ‘vacuum in discourse on costume’ (Barbieri, 2012).

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