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A large team of people including an AUB MA Illustration student poses for a photo in an exhibition space for the Green Fashion pop-up exhibition.

AUB MA Illustration student work features at Green Fashion exhibition


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Minh Hieu Nguyen, an MA Illustration student at Arts University Bournemouth (AUB), contributed illustrations embodying the essence of sustainable design at a Green Fashion exhibition in London attracting over 1,000 visitors in just five days.

Hosted by London South Bank University (LSBU) in March, the exhibition was part of new research led by Dr Mai Khanh Tran from LSBU and featured a sustainable fashion collection from Lan Huong, the leading Green Fashion designer who reduces the carbon footprint of clothing by using ramie fabrics.

The exhibition invited visitors to immerse themselves into a space replicating the giant sketchbook of designer Lan Huong and where they could learn how her ramie collection is made and how ramie has led to revolutions in industries, from furniture to agriculture.

Ramie, a cellulosic fibre similar to linen, is made from the stalks of the Chinese nettle plant making it biodegradable, reusable, and recyclable. Dr Mai Khanh Tran, known as Dr Mika, comments, "Because clothes make up 8-10% of global carbon emissions, my research is studying leading Green Fashion designer Lan Huong, so we can better understand what the fashion industry must to do to stay within the global 1.5ºC warming target. We are looking at how the use of biodegradable ramie in Lan Huong’s clothing could offer Green Fashion solutions to other industries."

Eight pieces from Lan Huong’s clothing collection were also exhibited to celebrate 50 years of the diplomatic relationship between Vietnam and the UK, and all visitors were also invited to have their say about the future of Green Fashion and contribute their ideas.

Minh Hieu explains his involvement with the exhibition:

"I created a project titled 'Through the Frames' for my final project of my first term at AUB; a friend of mine saw the project and suggested I connect with Dr Mika. When we met, Dr Mika told me all about her Green Fashion exhibition focused on sustainability which immediately resonated with me as it aligned perfectly with the themes I explore in my work and the audience I aim to reach.

"I was delighted when Dr Mika was happy for me to contribute. We agreed that I would create two illustrations embodying the essence of sustainable design, as well as 11 illustrations showcasing the various real-life applications of ramie.

"To make sure my illustrations were authentic and meaningful, I conducted extensive research on ramie, delving into its fibres, growth patterns, historical development, and current real-world applications. This knowledge allowed me to infuse my illustrations with genuine depth and understanding."

On the success of the exhibition, Dr Mika comments:

"The Green Fashion exhibition attracted more than 1,000 visitors in only five days, and I’ve already received so many invitations to showcase this exhibition in other locations and for other occasions, all of which far exceeded my expectations.

"Minh Hieu was incredible. He’s such a talented illustrator and has given me the best support for this project."

Minh adds, "As an illustrator passionate about advocating for social and global issues, I felt a deep sense of fulfilment knowing that my work was contributing to raising awareness and inspiring action. I firmly believe that positive change starts with small actions, and I am committed to doing my part in creating a better world.

"Together, through our collective efforts, I am confident that we can nurture and protect our beloved Earth."

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