Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-10-16
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  IDENTITY

Condom Couture
by Amy Wooten
2006-12-08

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Brazilian artist Adriana Bertini has a slightly different take on the rubber suit.

Bertini, an international sensation dedicated to HIV prevention, takes fashion design to a whole new level. Her colorful latex creations—from cute cocktail dresses to sultry ball gowns—are made entirely out of defective and expired condoms. Her exhibit, 'Dress Up Against AIDS: Exhibition of Condom Dresses,' is on display at Columbia College Chicago's Glass Curtain Gallery, 1104 S. Wabash, through Jan. 5.

This innovative artist hopes to break the social taboo of talking about and using love gloves by shedding a new, fashionable and humorous light on rubbers. The current exhibit features a wide array of vibrant, hot couture made from more than 100,000 condoms.

Windy City Times had a quick chat with the creative, passionate activist about just what led her to stitch together such a taboo object.

Windy City Times: What message do you hope people take away from the exhibit?

Adriana Bertini: The first message is for people to start to have more of a dialogue with themselves and each other about AIDS prevention and sexuality.

WCT: Do people typically react in a positive way, or are there people who walk away feeling uncomfortable still?

AB: It depends. In some places, some people will be very interested—fantastic. In other places there are still people who look at the work ashamedly and it's still a taboo. The reaction varies.

The most common reaction is, 'Oh wow, these are condoms? Really? How can that be?'

They immediately smile, and then they stop to think. That's what I've noticed, watching people.

I did a show in Africa within a conference with people seeing the show who worked with AIDS prevention and none of them knew they were condoms. It shows how distant people are from the only effective object that can be used for prevention for sexual transmission.

WCT: When did you first become involved in AIDS activism, and what led you to start creating dresses?

AB: Before working with AIDS and the dresses, there was a whole history of family education that has always led me to be an activist. I worked for Greenpeace for 10 years, and then when I left Greenpeace, I went to work for a volunteer program where, once a week, I taught theater to children living with HIV.

There was a sequence of events. There really wasn't one thing that led to, 'I'm going to make clothes out of condoms.' It started when somebody gave me a box with 144 condoms. Just leaving Greenpeace, I was very aware of the environmental aspect of it—what we do with this material, and if it's biodegradable or not. I started researching the actual material. Then, I started having a partnership with manufacturers and importers of condoms, and I started getting larger amount of condoms. The first large amount I received was 2,120. Then, I got increasingly involved, and now I get 100,000 a month.

WCT: What is the largest amount of condoms you've used for one piece?

AB: 80,000.

WCT: What kind of piece was it?

AB: It's Richard Gere's favorite piece. It's in Thailand showing at an NGO.


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.