The part-independent fashion designer showcase part-day rave known as MULTITASK held its 14th edition at Studio 301 NYC, a gallery and occasional event space in the Industrial Park section of East Williamsburg. Twenty designers, six DJs and live performers, and dozens of nonstop grooving shoppers filled the warehouse space for nearly 10 hours, starting in the afternoon and lasting until booze supplies ran dangerously low at 11PM.
Beyond the mostly untouched warehouse walls, nothing at MULTITASK 14.0 was tame. The attendees, a mix of flashy club kids, cyber goths, and classic Bushwick types bustled with energy that was only ignited further by the animated performance of singer Xhosa, decked out in an a bright green ensemble with matching green lipstick. Pictureplane, whose clothing line Alien Body was on sale at the event, and rapper Jay Boogie had notable performances throughout the evening.
The event’s crowning achievement came in the form of its clothing wares. Mostly toting unreleased, futuristic apparel, and accessories unlike anything seen at NYFW, the 25 designers on display represented an avant-garde underbelly of collective genius.
While many of these designers lie outside the mainstream fashion narrative, it’s evident that they’ve opted to create their own community instead, with interweaving influences among them. The intermingled influences of these designers can be noted in their joint efforts to break pre-set boundaries of how an article of clothing should function with emphasis on form over function.
This can be noted in the Double Puff Coat by WHATEVER 21, a fusion of two puffer jackets stitched together into a singular, four-armed parka.
A long velvet trench coat with an exposed leg opening courtesy of Elkel not only deconstructed the functionality of outer wear, but it managed to look like an article of clothing fit for both medieval royalty and a character from The Matrix.
Already a perennial favorite and featured earlier this year on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar Kazakhstan the echo hats by H E I D I L E E are continuous, bejeweled masks bound together to make majestically eerie headwear unlike anything else on the market.
All in all, MULTITASK 14.0 was a bold example of the NYC’s underground fashion scene. We can only wait for organizers Brian Whatever (of WHATEVER 21) and Mackswell Sherman (of Moves Concept Store) to put on another edition in the near future.