Today we had a special visit at the DAA house: Adriana Bertini is in Belgium because next Wednesday the new campaign of Amnesty International will launch in Brussels and Adriana created an artwork for this campaign. Because she was in Belgium she saw the opportunity to visit DAA so she came by to tell us about her work as a socially aware artist and fashion designer. To those who don’t know her: Adriana Bertini is the one and only fashion designer who makes couture with condoms. Yes you’re reading it right, condoms! And the clothes she makes are really very beautiful.
She started her career when she was working at an NGO that was operating against HIV. At this place she got a lot of condoms that she wanted to hand out in an original way. That’s when she got the idea to make a necklace with the condoms and spread them like that. Thosee necklaces inspired her to design other items with condoms too. And now, all these years later she is making beautiful dresses out of condoms that were rejected at production, so she does her bit for recycling and upcycling as well. These dresses were exhibited at the World AIDS Conference in Toronto, the Museum of World Culture in Sweden, the Glass Curtain Gallery at Columbia College Chicago, the Fowler Museum at UCLA Los Angeles and in the Centraal Museum in Utrecht, among others. Her message to the world is that condoms have to be a basic part of life -like a pair of jeans- and as necessary as a great love.
After her explanation she showed us how she makes some shapes out of condoms. So now we, the students of DAA, are struggling to design a T-shirt ourselves, but it really is a difficult job!
For me, this was an interesting and inspiring day. It’s nice to hear a story like Adriana’s that a person can really find his/her passion and make something wonderful out of it. I think Adriana is a good example for people to realize that they can make a change if they really want to. She convinced me that when you have a good idea, a lot of passion and perseverance you can do anything in life.