Fashioning Cancer is a charity fundraiser in support of the Canadian Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Centre at UBC. Hosted at the Porsche Centre (688 Terminal Avenue) on September 23 from 6:30pm – 9:00pm, the fashion centrepiece of this event revolves around ten one-of-a-kind evening gowns designed by Jacqueline Firkins, the Assistant Professor of UBC’s Department of Theatre and Film.

What’s so special about these gowns?  The design, colour and materials of the pieces are all inspired by colourful microscopic images of cancer cells and cellular systems. It’s a little bit of a strange idea to produce such a literal interpretation of cancer in fashion, but these designs are meant to inspire deeper conversations about disease for women.

Many women who have battled cancer express a disconnect with the fashion imagery that commonly represents the disease. The most prevalent is the pink ribbon, a signature for breast cancer awareness and a useful tool for marketing campaigns that support cancer research. Jacqueline’s research is intended to generate artistic imagery that is more connected to the disease itself, and since it is being expressed in fashion, the imagery is also connected to body image.

“My hope is that somehow through fashion, I more closely tap into what a woman might be feeling about her body as she undergoes the disease, but simultaneously reflect a strength, beauty, and resilience.” – Jacqueline Firkins

These gowns will be auctioned off during the Fashioning Cancer fundraiser.  Other highlights of the night includes a live set with Canadian singer, songwriter and cancer survivor Bif Naked.  Cocktail party food and drink will be provided by Hawksworth Restaurant.

Tickets are $100, with proceeds towards the Canadian Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Centre at UBC.  For further information and to buy tickets, visit www.alumni.ubc.ca/fashion.

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