Artist and designer Jacinda Martinez began playing with her food to make bold and beautiful statements about slow fashion, in a beautiful series she calls Fashion in the Raw. Based on the coast of Maine, Martinez first combined her love of farming with art, when she was inspired to use the textural stalks of many of the plants she harvested daily in her art works. Made from stitched together amaranth, patches of leafy chard and sewn together broccoli stalks, her living creations appear as high fashion designs, captured in beautiful photographs to show how like fresh vegetables, fashion is here today and gone tomorrow.
Working on an organic farm showed Martinez the beauty of vegetables. Not just for their lurid color, but also their texture, durability and fragility. Her excitement for their beauty gave her the idea to combine it with her love of fashion. In 2009, after her first season working on an organic farm, she was inspired by an overgrown patch of leafy greens, which she envisioned as a drapey dress.
Over the past six farming seasons, Martinez has fashioned over 40 designs from her colorful and diverse bounty. Curls of scapes are arranged to make a full skirt, rhubarb is woven into a blood red bodice, and long leafy greens are dried to make a feather-like train. Each vegetable lends its own texture, color and story.
Together, her collection of Fashion in the Raw makes commentary that can be read in a variety of ways. Some see her works as a celebration of eating beautiful organic food. Others compare her fashions to the fleeting nature of the actual fashion world, while Martinez would like her viewers to be inspired to think about where their fashion comes from, with the same desire they have for buying only from organic farms.