Liadain Kaminska has been working as a costume designer and maker since 2012. She draws inspiration from all around her, from nature and food to history and visual art, music and traditional textiles and techniques. The interplay of these elements culminate in very unique designs for each production, which develop in constant collaboration with other designers, directors and performers.
Her practice has evolved from student and in-house productions at the Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College Dublin, to fringe and professional productions. Working with somewhat constrained budgets for a prolonged period of time has lead her to become a hoarder, recycler and reuser. She strives to combine inventiveness and creativity with a consciousness of the economy of buying, sourcing and making costumes.
Liadain is interested in performance that is above all else engaged with the present, that is pressing and provocative, that is beautiful, grotesque, moving and disturbing.
Previous work includes productions by Collapsing Horse Theatre Company, Company SJ and Just The Lads Theatre Company. She is also co-founder of Just The Lads Theatre Company and Discotheque Collective.
- Nomination Best Design (full production team) Dublin Fringe Festival Awards 2014 for At Sea (Just The Lads Theatre Company)
The design for this place and time-specific production was informed by a lengthy research process. This visual research spanned across many forms, encompassing photography, painting, architecture and sculpture.
Extracting colours, textures and tones from a combination of this research, I created a core palette that was a constant reference point and inspiration throughout the design process. Due to Zia Holly’s contemporary set, the costume design was integral to locating the characters in a particular place and time in history – Theresienstadt Camp during the second World War. This setting also had a great influence on design.
Theresienstadt Camp was a Jewish ‘settlement’ that independent aid workers were invited to inspect and observe the Nazi occupation at work. It was a ‘model’ camp where peace and normal life was presented so as to convince the outside world of their normalcy, even decency. It was, in of itself, a piece of theatre. This meta-theatricality also had a great influence on the design. The idea that the clothing worn by the characters were in fact costumes given to them by the Nazis allowed me to experiment with size, design, imitation and authenticity.