A futuristic, government response to homelessness in which people in need are given an all purpose, weather-proof, formal suit, forms the outcome of Max Armstrong’s research into fashion for protest – and a protest itself. The All Purpose Suit provides warmth, protection, and also formal interview attire – and is a response to by a close family member’s involvement in homeless support work and what Armstrong’s own observations in Sheffield.
“The suit itself is something I am incredibly proud of. Over the course of a Christmas holiday, my living room at home became a tailor’s workshop of sorts as I gave myself a crash course in sewing and suit making. Much to my huge relief, the tarpaulin I had bought worked perfectly in the sewing machine, and I returned to university with a functioning plastic suit. To realise this suit in reality and bring it to life, I used photography and photoshop to compose photos of the suit being worn on the streets of Sheffield. The final publication captured both the final work and the process of creating the suit. The intention is to use it to open a discourse about our approach, as a society, to how we help vulnerable people on our streets.”
Since leaving university, Armstrong has continued to work with Sheffield-based events company, Magnetic North, on a rebranding project and a mix series cover. He has worked with artist Tom Lovelace to create posters for his forthcoming exhibition. He has also spent the last two months working as a graphic designer for the Gateshead-based media company Epic Social.
Read the All Purpose Suit publication
The All Purpose Suit
Circadian Data Wheel
Fine liner illustration and digital animation.
An exploration of the relationship between how we function as humans and as graphic designers. "My research centred around keeping a varied routine and critically analysing my ability to work creatively. The final piece became a long, comic-like illustration that reflected the events of the year that was then analysed through symbols and a piece of writing. I then formatted this into a digital, online data wheel that can be scrolled through and observed". 2020
Two posters advertising Tom Lovelace's exhibition, Mirror Mirror. 2020
Sheffield Modern Paper Dolls
Watercolour ink illustrations.
Part of an exhibition in conjunction with the celebration of 100 years of council housing. "I chose to explore both researched and personal experiences of the stigmatisation of council housing and people who live in it, visualising this as paper dolls that you dress up in stereotypical “chav” clothing. The piece was contextualised as an insert in the Sun newspaper, and could be cut out and played with". 2019
Screenprint poster series, 2020
Workshop and poster exploring collage as an artistic medium as a homage to its use in the Dada movement.
Performance lecture / Video. "Held during lockdown over Google Meet, the piece discussed the nature of Dadaist art and included a segment in which a video piece created the illusion that I was discussing my thoughts with Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray". 2020
IAM International Workshop
Workshop and poster, 2020
Magnetic North Event Work
Posters and online graphics
Magnetic North Rebrand and Mix Series
Logo and digital mix series cover, commission for Magnetic North, 2020
Auto-Destructive Art – Speculative Posters
Poster, wooden crate and spray paint.
A performance exhibition advertisement, capturing the concept of Auto-Destructive art in a falling crate. Each piece of the crate held the details for the event, and was left to be taken by passers by. This was then reformatted into the poster shown. 2019