Do you know how many are a lifetime of clothing? Since we usually throw away the clothes we no longer use over time, do we get an idea of how many there are in total?
To answer this question, in 2018 Benjamin Von Wong and Laura François came up with the idea of gathering them all in a single wardrobe, creating the tallest wardrobe in the world: in a single instant, those who look up can see a life of clothes with their own eyes.
The wardrobe is different for each of us, according to the economic availability, the era, the culture. Benjamin and Laura have estimated the number of garments that an average person in an economically developed country wears during their life: 3,000.
In the steel structure, assembled over five long days, 3,000 items donated by volunteer students from Fayoum University were hung on 180 meters of wire inside the Mall of Arabia in Cairo.
As we placed each one we were reminded of the different phases in our lives and just how many clothes we use aloing the way.
The tallest wardrobe in the world wants to remind us to:
Love the clothes we have
Buy only what we need
Sharing what we don’t
We wanted the installation to be more than just a pretty piece of art. We wanted it to become a space which could also be used to generate tangible action and to encourage individuals to think locally.
For this reason, all the used clothes were destined to support Refuge Egypt. “Clothing donations are not always the best approach when wanting to purge your closet,” Laura explains. “Clothing bundles coming from the West and being sold to developing regions for higher prices can ultimately cause a rift in the local economy. Fortunately, this isn’t the case in Egypt. The World’s Tallest Closet was a great opportunity to call the public to action in rethinking their consumption – and also to donate directly to local communities that need it”.
Photos from: Von Wong blog