Adrienne McKenzie

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"I wanted to be joyful, active, and carefree – much like, heaven forbid, a child! I wanted to be a Mermaid Again".

— Adrienne McKenzie
Mentor – Alice Walsh

“I must be a mermaid, I have no fear of depths, and a great fear of shallow living.” Anais Nin
In the present, I am alone at home during this pandemic at my shelter-in-place. Sitting at home each day during the pandemic, I found my mind drifting out of the present towards the past and dreaming about the future. The past focused on when I was the happiest as a child growing up in Florida with my friends where we would go swimming every day after school at the beach or the pool. We would play so many games and often times imagine ourselves to be Mermaids.

They were so beautiful and powerful in our young minds and it was quite wonderful to play ourselves into their likeness as we crashed through the waves or swam in the deep end of the pool at night.

Finding myself back I started to think about the future. And though I am quite in tune with all the possibilities we might face with this pandemic I wanted to ask myself, “But what if things do get better? What’s the first thing you want to celebrate?” My answer was I wanted some happiness again – some moments to be carefree to be out of the house and not surrounded by walls or barriers;

I wanted to be joyful, active, and carefree – much like, heaven forbid, a child! I wanted to be a Mermaid Again. Inspired, I decided to make a fashion piece for all of us Land-Dwelling Mermaids!

My entry was a modern aesthetic that reflects traditional aspects of the ocean in abstract details and embellishments. It is for those with a brave imagination AND a secret, underwater life.

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Adrienne McKenzie - image from the official 2020 Prize shoot
Adrienne McKenzie - Supporting materials
Adrienne McKenzie - Supporting materials
Adrienne McKenzie - image from the official 2020 Prize shoot