I grew up in Hong Kong- a small island densely packed with some of the world’s highest skyscrapers and populated by over 7 million people- a city where you unconsciously learn to hold your breath in certain streets to avoid breathing in too much dust.
Unlike so many other Asian countries where cheap washable cotton masks or disposable surgical masks are a common sight, masks do not appear to be considered trendy in New York, due to a widely held stigma amongst those that those who wear them have severe illnesses that can be transferred with a single cough. Never before has it been so crucial for people to put their health before fashion, yet the belief that masks are not "trendy" enough to wear has impacting people for the worse.
I therefore decided to construct a mask that raises awareness about air pollution, and lightly pokes fun at today's consumers' up side down priorities. The fashionable structural quality and aesthetics in symmetry in my design was used in order to appeal to the use of masks. On the other hand, the mask also plays on the irony through the function that allows the wearer to twist and open the flaps that allow dust to flow right in.