MAAD x STORIES: Taikensonzai

Adel doesn't consider herself an artist, but check out her gallery - after reading this article, of course - and you can see first-hand her works of art


Why did you choose to focus on up-cycled fashionables and accessories? Do you intend to focus your brand purely on this?

It started with and is driven by the sustainability movement , and a sense of urgency to rebel against the fast-fashion system and its massive problems. The counterpoint to that is Japanese craft philosophy and the Shokunin spirit.

Do you have a personal brand philosophy? 

taikensonzai's core philosophy is to utilise waste as a resource, primarily working with donated/unwanted/waste clothing and textile-based products. I run taikensonzai as a sustainable fashion label as well as a design and craft practice (taikensonzai means experience:existence in Japanese), creating made-to-measure and upcycled garments, accessories and other functional products with a minimal-waste ethos. 

Besides creating up-cycled fashionables, what are your other signatures that set you apart from other brands? 

Workshops add to the taikensonzai experience, because knowing the process and the experience of making the objects in our lives adds meaning to their existence and lifespan.

Do you have a goal in mind, behind your brand? 

Making wearable products means that anyone can support the movement by wearing something made sustainably and showing their stance to the world.

What is the most critical thing to you, as an artist/ to your art? 

As a designer, we were trained to solve problems by creating functional products . I think art should make us think. It would be awesome if the two are combined!

What is the most challenging thing about being a local artist?

Making a living / Not starving?

What are your long term plans for your career as an artist? 

I am not too sure about having an artistic career, to be honest. It would be wonderful if my products are viewed as artistic!

I am looking into developing more products and working with local social enterprises. My big dream is to have a fibre recycling factory, textile mill and cottage industry manufacturing working in a zero-waste/cradle-to-cradle/circular-economy style network somewhere in Southeast Asia.

We also try to get a glimpse of this artist's impressions of MAAD

How did you first find out about MAAD, and when did you first join? 

I have been paying attention since MAAD began at the Red Dot Museum and visited many times but only got to become a vendor at the last one on 7th April.

What is your motivation in joining the event? 

I was sad that MAAD was moving since the Red Dot Museum was undergoing a big change and wanted to make it to the last MAAD there.

What are your hopes for MAAD? 

Please stay arty, funky, diverse and affordable for all!

How has MAAD affected your art and craft? 

I felt encouraged by that last market outing.




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