Today we’d like to introduce you to Aidana Baldassarre.
Aidana, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was born in Italy, grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina and came to the US to the City of Boston in the early ’90s. While growing up in Buenos Aires I studied to be a teacher, but I always played with architecture and designs hands-on, thus discovering that those were my passions I started to experiment in those fields when I was 20. Building my own small house in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, adding to the mix found objects and materials that came from demolished buildings.
At a point I shifted my focus for a while to fashions and wearable art, using curtains and old garments to re-create new outfits. My designs, whether small or large, were driven by the idea of transforming old and discarded elements into new, one of a kind designs in an organic way, teaching myself the skills needed for each project.
I started TrashFashions in Boston in 2004 in Boston. I applied first to a call for artists in New Zealand, designing a dress made completely from bicycle inner tubes, without using machines or glue, built and assembled by hand. After that, I never stopped. My first exhibit was the TrashFashions fashion show in Boston MA, then a series of Fashion Shows, exhibits and collaborations in various venues from Museums and galleries to corporate events in the USA ,NYC, Florida, Seattle,California, Colorado and internationally – Beirut Lebanon, France for Paris Fashion Week in the” Ethical Fashion Show”, and New Zealand and Holland. From 2006 to 2010 I relocated to Buenos Aires and I had the opportunity to participate with Trashfashions in the “Puro Diseno Show” and also created a runway fashion show “Basura Cero”.
Upon returning to the U.S. in 2010, I placed Trashfashions art and designs in GAB art gallery in Wynwood Miami. In 2011 I participated with a Trashfashions fashion show in Caffeina bar in Miami during Artbasel week. In 2012 and 2013 I participated in a runway show at the Armori Art Center for “Fashion Artillery” an annual fundraising event. In 2017 I participated as an invited artist for the group show “Waste Not” at the Art Gallery at Eissey Campus Palm Beach Estate College, where I presented a Tango dress installation and performed dancing the Argentine Tango another passion of mine.
For the past two years, my designs have been available for sale at the Cornell Museum shop in Delray Beach, FL. I was also commissioned by the designer Kenneth Cole to transform his NYC billboards into a series of Tote Bags.
I collaborated with Sierra Club providing a Trashfashions Fashion show for their yearly fundraising event.
The TrashFashions show combines art, designs, and fashions in an educational and entertaining way.
TrashFashions is also a line of products made in the USA and a NON-Profit organization that brings awareness about sustainability, conscious consumerism, and aims to aid and inspire women by encouraging positive body image.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Life itself its no a smooth road.. and naturally for an artist that keeps on moving to different countries, raising a family and without a formal education in art, every move is a struggle so I will say that in my case were mostly due to my own stubborn decision of following the creative path, the dream, the passions, at times sacrificing a lot, at times getting jobs that will just cover living expenses but never stop creating in one way or another.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Trashfashions story. Tell us more about the business.
What I’m known for is, transformations of recyclables into wearable art. from plastic bottles to diamond necklaces and earrings, from rubber inner tubes to outrageous outfits, purses and mostly is one-of-a-kind designs. I’m proud of my own standards: I basically refused to buy anything if I can re-purpose something. I’m not a tree huger, this obsession with transformation I guess it comes from growing up in a country where everything is expensive so you have to keep on reviving what you have.
I also like to empower women and my organization, and that’s what Trashfashions does, by organizing clothing swaps, where women get together to exchange clothes that they don’t wear anymore the leftovers get donated to a women shelter were it’s not to be re-sale but giving to women that really need something good to wear. So it’s a different kind, of recycling and a play date for women.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
I feel that success is doing what you are inspired to do, reinventing your art and creating mostly what you want to create, that internal feeling of satisfaction that you are being true to yourself in what you do. It might change from time to time but the core is in creating mostly our own opportunities to be creative every day… and in that regard, I feel that I’m successful.