The white tee shirt represents a consumer good whose value, meaning, and production are highly variable and oftentimes highly suspect. Of all the fashion pieces to serve as an emblem of late capitalist consumer culture, why did VAULTE X-XII choose the white tee? Fashion researcher and curator Joelle Firzli of Tribute will lead a lecture and conversation surrounding this controversial piece, tracing its origins through the 20th century—from workwear to cultural signifier.   

 about the speaker

Joelle Firzli is a trilingual fashion researcher, curator, and ethical stylist. She is the co-founder of Tribute and the DC Sustainable Fashion Collective. She studied political science in Lebanon and holds a MA in Fashion Studies from Parsons School of Design in New York, with a deep and varied knowledge of fashion history and theory. Her research interests include 20th Century fashion, sustainability, Non-Western fashion and textiles, and fashion photography. Tedx Speaker and fashion critic, her work has been presented in Beirut, Hanoi, Washington DC, NYC, and Austin, and featured in publications such as the Business of Fashion, CR Fashion Book, the Huffington Post and Marie Claire. 


VAULTE X-XII is a conceptual project by Composite Co. that takes the form of a hype fashion brand, pop-up shop, publication, and event series to examine branding’s role in glamorizing the consumption of otherwise uninteresting products. For more information, subscribe for updates at and follow along on Instagram @vaulte.xxii


This project has been sponsored by the Kraft Initiative, HapstakDemetriou+, and Dhruva Rajendra, with in-kind support from JBG Smith, freedom, and Design Within Reach. WPA is supported by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts.


1921 8th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001




Sunday, March 17, 5-7pm

Photo gallery