Graduation is anything but traditional for the Class Of 2020 but for the students of the Parsons School of Design, tradition just got an upgrade by none other than Solange Knowles. In a newly developed partnership, Knowles’ Saint Heron and the Parsons School of Design have teamed up to launch Here and Now, “an immersive virtual festival designed to celebrate the thesis and capstone work from the Class of 2020.”
The new digital environment is an extension of the University’s Parsons Festival, an annual celebration highlighting graduating seniors across the College’s multiple schools. While the New York City based festival usually consists of in-person exhibits and activations during its three-week celebration, shifting to a fully-digital event will allow Parsons to continue the school’s eight year tradition while highlighting students’ talent, creativity and their ability to “adapt to the challenges of the moment.”
“The Class of 2020 is in a unique and unexpected position,” said Jason Kass, Interim Dean of Fashion at Parsons School of Design. “We are excited to partner with Saint Heron on a shared vision for extraordinary access and meaningful insight into our students’ work.”
With the festival turning completely digital, Here and Now will actually be bigger than ever before, allowing students the opportunity to virtually display their end of the year projects on an international scale while securing connections with industry leaders in fashion, art and culture. The festival will run from June to August and will include mentorship opportunities, online discussions, performances, design workshops and more. Not to mention, the partnership with Saint Heron has already opened the door for over 300 graduating students to team up with well-renowned artist, Jacolby Satterwhite (who is also responsible for Solange’s 3D “Sound of Rain” video), and Saint Heron’s creative team to create the 3D installation, Metonymy, a project that will be on full display during the virtual festival.
“The Saint Heron team is honored to partner with The School of Fashion to celebrate and uplift the dedicated work of the graduating class of 2020 by presenting, Here and Now,” the team said in a statement. ” We look forward to working with the students over the coming weeks and helping bring attention to their hard work and unique perspective. As the world confronts the challenges of our current global crisis, fashion and design communities must embrace new ways to pause, evolve, and adapt. These challenges open up opportunities to expand growth in our creativity and innovation—two expressions at the core of Saint Heron as well as Parsons’ students.”
Here and Now is part of the University’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has greatly affected how graduates are celebrated across the country. With this new interactive digital environment, students’ work will be on full display on the Here and Now site through Parsons, starting in early July. “Our graduates are unequivocally the future of fashion and textile design, fashion marketing and management,” Krass continued. “We are committed to creating opportunities to showcase their outcomes and successfully position them for the next chapter of their lives.”
For information, visit http://festival.parsons.edu/.