Archive Collection Exhibition Publication Work

Kleiner Brauner Lookbook

Kleiner Brauner Lookbook

2024, edition of 100

“It started with me reading a menu in a Viennese coffeehouse and unexpectedly finding myself.”

Conceived of as wearable sculptures that travel, Brishty Alam’s Kleiner Brauner series is an ongoing celebration of identity and process of claiming space. Working with dye and color palettes tuned especially for her complexion, the custom jumpers question how the meaning of an object can multiply depending on the person, place or thing wearing it.

Departing from fashion and lifestyle publications produced by Atelier Bachwitz at the Palais des Beaux Arts Wien last century, Alam produced a lookbook for the collection based on her Kleiner Brauner work. The performative project asks how a beloved staple of Viennese coffee history behaves when transformed into a wearable slogan and placed into different social, cultural, and aesthetic contexts.

‍“The series is about centring brownness, claiming it and celebrating it. It’s something that I know many of us struggled with growing up, and somehow also about the connections of BIPOC people I’ve been trying to gather in the last few years in Vienna.”

Produced in collaboration with the recently re-registered Atelier Bachwitz brand (established at the Palais des Beaux Arts Wien and later dissolved by Nazi occupation), the Kleiner Brauner Lookbook includes a text by fashion designer Dalia Hassan about in-betweeness and growing up as a Wiener Kaffeehauskind, outlines Alam’s sculptural process, and is available as a digital download to print for yourself.

– Seth Weiner, Palais des Beaux Arts

Commissioned by Palais des Beaux Arts. Text by Dalia Hassan. Design by Seth Weiner. Featuring: Kleiner Brauner, 2022–2024. Funding by Stadt Wien (MA7).