Above: Michelle of MALCONTENT Plus..
“ I make unisex clothes that seasonally carryover, through the layering of pieces. The concept of designing a new collection each year is over. ”
As the museum anticipates our reopening, we look forward to one of our favorite outdoor events: The Market at Brooklyn Museum. In the meantime, together with our marketplace partner, Brooklyn Pop-Up, we are highlighting several of our outdoor vendors in a Virtual Marketplace. Along with handcrafted products that are available for direct purchase, there are interviews with each of our highlighted vendors and photos to give more context to their work. Please follow the link below to visit the Virtual Marketplace and learn more about our amazing vendors!
Brooklyn Museum Shop: Tell us about MALCONTENT Plus. How do you create your products?
MP: MALCONTENT Plus is a plus-sized luxury streetwear brand for “any-sized” individuals.
BKMS: Why do you make them?
MP: It could be a reaction to growing up and having to wear tailored parochial school uniforms that were too tight for my body. Feeling that compression on my waist...yikes! The remembrance of deep grooves indented behind too-tight clothing was the catalyst for convex silhouettes. Outside of size 14, there weren’t many alternatives available. I’m fat and I have a thick waistline. Surely I shouldn’t be punished for that.
BKMS: MALCONTENT has said “Deconstruct as an act of protest” about your apparel- can you tell us how this relates to your products?
MP: Let me explain it this way…try going to a NYC department store to buy streetwear in a size 22. You have to settle for tactile inspiration because no high-end designers are looking to clothe anyone over a size 10. Sample sales and vintage shops are great opportunities to purchase designers who have bias against larger bodies. Why not turn four size 00 blouses into an outfit for a 5X body? When you are fat, you have to destroy the very same clothing that will never be made in your size. Redesign it to your liking. That is an act of protest.
BKMS: What is your connection to Brooklyn?
MP: Brooklyn is starting to feel like a memory even though I’ve lived here much of my life. My apartment was just a few feet away across the street from this museum. I loved my tiny pre-war studio, even when they were stealing the brass off the doors for drugs. Somehow I felt safer back then, pre-gentrification. The Brooklyn Museum of Art was practically an extension of my living room.
BKMS: What were some of your inspirations in creating the current collection?
MP: I’m pretty much obsessed with what fat people might look like in the future. We seem never seem to exist in science fiction, but...yeah that must be changed somehow. I’m forever inspired by Grace Jones. I’m still awed by this Antonio Lopez illustration. Auntie Grace is an endless source.
The Brooklyn Museum Shop is excited to virtually offer The Market at Brooklyn Museum with our marketplace partner, Brooklyn Pop-Up. To shop, please follow the link, here.
All images ©Malcontent Plus, 2020.
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