The rag and bone man is one collecting old rags, metal and bone from households to sell on by the pound to paper mill. Rag paper is the highest quality paper there is being used for money still today. During the 19hds there was a law not to bury dead people dressed in cotton but in wool as to not to waste any resources.
His status is honorable though he lives in poor surroundings. He is right at the bottom of society making a living of other people’s waste. But he is proud. He works and carries the hardship well.
Throughout his job he whistles and dreams looking around at the beauty of life. He doesn’t need more and appreciates all he’s got. He is a loner and free spirit – no-one tells him what to do and when. He knows his duties. He doesn’t complain. When he’s got enough he moves on.
In 1839 one pound of cotton made him 5ct published by the Journal of Edinburgh…
In Paris the rag and bone men, also called bone grubber, were known as Chiffoniers.
It must require some per severity and strength to hunt down the smallest piece of cotton being of no value to someone else but priceless in the world of a bone grubber. It was daunting whilst possibly being the best thing one could do these days – where resources are limited and overused.
Using existing ressources and repurposing old stuff is not innovative at all but very up to date seeing as we run out of them at increasing rate due to insatiable consumption.
Made of finest rag paper I I produced a range of necessary garments for the scavenging type of today. They will serve its purpose while they last. To then make a new set and repurpose the old ones. As you do.
The process took me from clothes recyclers to making my own screen. It’s daunting and exhaustive using cotton rags, bone glue and water to then draw the paper. The result is
+ finest rag cloth +
Starting with a material means losing control at first…it‘s this uncertainty that may reveal new insights and lead to innovation eventually..
MA MoKoTex 2015 Le Chiffonier – A Scavenging Type Task: Capsule Collection Menswear, 2-3 Outfits, Moods, Sketches, Photo Series (excerpt) Timing: 1 term