MFA Fashion Design and Society alumna Maria Kazakova debuted The Displaced—a menswear collection under her label, JAHNKOY—to acclaim in January 2017 at New York Fashion Week. The Siberian-born designer opened up a provocative dialogue about global commerce, the radical implications of craft, and climates political and environmental with her line, created from secondhand clothing and what appear to be cult-brand sportswear knockoffs.
The Displaced, pieces of which are shown above, features Swarovski crystals and elaborate embroidery, resulting in a rich hybrid aesthetic. Visors, masks, and shoes complete ensembles that hint at performative gender play. In a publication distributed at her show, Kazakova explained her collection's subtitle — "Crafting Revolution" — by describing craft as a peaceful protest against the dominant fashion system. Messages like "Don't Bring Good Shit to Africa" and "Post-Freedom," stitched on garments alongside sports logos and flags, reinforce her critique. The bricolage defies easy categorization while underscoring the power of fashion to raise questions about consumerism, inequality, and cultural imperialism.
"In naming my line JAHNKOY, which means ‘new spirit village' in Crimean Tatar, I'm convening global change makers," explains Kazakova. She and fellow 2016 program graduate Kozaburo Akasaka were among the eight finalists—selected from 12,000 applicants— for the 2017 LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers.