The WAS and the IS Collection

I'm excited to post a project that I've been working on for the past few months. I'm calling this project the Was and Is. THE WAS AND IS Collection is inspired by an 1870 book called "On the writing of the insane” by G. Mackenzie Bacon of Cambridge, England. These patterns are based on the writings of an anonymous asylum patient.


So, apparently, these pictures were the product of "a respectable Artisan of considerable intelligence who is sent to Cambridgeshire Asylum after being nearly three years in a Melancholy mood.” The unnamed patient for 2 years spent most of his time writing sometimes versus and sometimes drawing extraordinary diagrams. This book goes on to explain that after this man left the Asylum he went back to work and was very successful and prosperous but after a few years begin to write again and do this sort of graphic writing and unfortunately did not end well for him as he committed suicide.

And it got me thinking about that the whole reason that this guy was in there anyway. I mean if all it took was a "Melancholy mood” to be considered unstable, all my friends and tons of artists would be there for sure. It’s disturbing that he was constantly told NOT to make creative work, yet when he did, society penalized him for it by plunking him in an asylum. He was happy creating art and because it wasn’t the sanctioned landscapes or portraits of the time — he was punished. 


I think he WAS a frustrated graphic designer and now his work IS living again. He also uses these words in his typography. I've been working with the text for a few months now, and I've created several colors and patterns based on these graphics.

THE WAS AND IS collection is the first multi-product collection that I have created around a theme. For this collection, I have partnered with VIDA to produce these gorgeous scarves in India and Pakistan. VIDA goes beyond monetary compensation; scarf-makers in Karachi, Pakistan, for instance, earn literacy classes. The program is run by Literate Pakistan and was created in partnership with a Skoll Award winning organization: The Citizens Foundation. 

See how VIDA is creating beauty, every step of the way. 

I also like that they're using modal fabric (spun from Beech trees) which is an environmental choice. 

The scarves feel silky and gorgeous and very very LUXE.

I'm very proud of them they're absolutely gorgeous

kimberly gonzalezComment