Philosophy

Katrin Schnabl is a designer whose work is primarily situated in contemporary fashion and performance. Visual attributes expand movement, explore tensions, negative space, flow and patterns, and emotional attributes enhance and sharpen the performer's sense of their role. The name lineamente suggests trailing and defining emphatic vault lines created by underlying motion or tension. With every garment there is a re-negotiation of form, of edge, of outline, of lineament that encourages a shift of perception. Edge emerges as a crucial border where cloth ends and skin begins.

 

"My work is deeply informed by collaborating with performing artists, translating abstract concepts through construction into subtle, tactile costumes. Visual attributes expand movement, explore tensions, negative space, flow, and patterns, and emotional attributes enhance and sharpen the performer's sense of their role. Then I reconfigure these fine lines. I chose lineamente as a name, as it suggests both trailing, defining lines, emphasizing vault lines created by the underlying motion or tension. By observing where thought and motion erupt and how the 'weakest' area gives way to expose what is contained underneath, there is a re-negotiation of form, of edge, of outline, of lineament. This encourages a certain fearlessness - it is futile to take sides, the exposure of the inside reflects but a shift in perception. Edge emerges as a crucial border where cloth ends and skin begins, where texture of cloth borders on air and space. There is something very lyrical about bridging the emerging juxtapositions, a continuity of thoughts lingering, unraveling, trailing off, of questions unanswered and sutras."


Exhibitions/Collections

IN ADDITION TO RELEASING SEASONAL COLLECTIONS, Schnabl has presented numerous exhibitions in Chicago and New York. Noteworthy group exhibitions in the recent past include the installation 'Acrobats' at the Evanston Art Center and the 4Lines exhibition 'Shell and Shelter' at the Tourism Center Gallery. On the runway, she has participated as a featured designer in GenArt Chicago's Fresh Faces in Fashion and Fashion Focus' Allure of Couture Fashion Show as well as Macy's Designer of Chicago Fashion Show. Solo, Schnabl has spearheaded numerous events and exhibitions, such as the live model presentation of 'The Imp Got Out'.

Collaborations

In her collections and artistic collaborations, Schnabl engages contemporary concerns through research and observation, distilling and adapting her findings and explorations onto the bodily scale through garment. Since the mid-eighties, she has collaborated as a costume designer with choreographers including Jody Oberfelder, John Jasperse, DD Dorvillier, Doug Elkins and Trisha Brown. Currently she is collaborating with Jennifer Monson, DanceWorks Chicago, Jonathan Meyer, Julia Antonick and Steven West.


Background

TRAINED AS A DANCER, Schnabl moved from Germany to New York in the mid-eighties to pursue performance. A break from dancing switched her focus towards her career as a designer. After graduating from the Fashion Institute of Technology, where she received multiple awards, she freelanced for renowned designers, including Jil Sander, Robert Danes and Bernard Chaus. In 1999 she launched Miche Kimsa, in 2002, she branched off with her eponymous label. The style of her line ties together her interest in fashion, dance and the intersection of both forms.

As Educator

Prior to moving to Chicago, Schnabl taught Design Studio and Fashion Industry at Parsons School of Design in NYC. Currently, she is an associate professor in the fashion department, and served as program director for graduate studies in Fashion, Body, and Garment at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.