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Fiber Major Uses Performance Garments to Inspire, Motivate

Mika Eubanks (fiber)

Posted 04.01.11 by MICA communications

I don’t consider myself a fashion designer. I consider myself an artist who uses textiles as my medium. 

Mika Eubanks models her line for "RACK," "Remembering the Future."

When Mika Eubanks enrolled at MICA, she wanted to pursue her interests in fashion, painting, and drawing. But the fiber major had one non-art-related goal, as well. "I wanted to push myself in leadership skills," she said. After winning the Emerging Leader Award her freshman year, Eubanks was on her way, serving as a board member for the Black Student Union and coordinating the Office of Diversity's Annual Benefit Fashion Show last year.

Now her leadership capabilities are spilling over into her art, as she hopes to use experimental fashion to make people think about topics such as race and culture in different ways. "Race is something that separates people," Eubanks said. "Art can open the door for people to ask questions and promote understanding."

Eubanks is using her senior thesis project to help get that message across. For this year's Annual Benefit Fashion Show, Genuine Articles, she's creating jackets that display common generalizations made about people of different racial and ethnic groups. The jackets will come apart, "so metaphorically and literally there will be a shedding of stereotypes," Eubanks said.

A second part of her senior thesis project, to be shown at RACK: An Experimental Fashion Event, will celebrate the oral traditions passed down to her by her family. "My mom's a storyteller and she'd tell me stories she heard from her parents and other family members. I made a garment that can be used to perform these stories." For example, one jacket has a belt attached with pictures of a story her mother told her as a child.

Upon leaving MICA, the Cheverly, Maryland native is considering a future in costume design. She's particularly interested in finding creative ways to express her love for experimental fashion.

"I don't consider myself a fashion designer," she said. "I consider myself an artist who uses textiles as my medium."


Photo caption: Mika Eubanks models her line for RACK, Remembering the Future.