Designer, chair of Moore College fashion department visits AL DÍA
As an educator and innovator in the world of design and an advocate for her native Puerto Rico, Nasheli Juliana Ortiz-González shared her knowledge and personal story of purpose and success in the fashion world.
On Wednesday, Nasheli Juliana Ortiz-González visited the AL DÍA newsroom, taking time out of her hectic schedule as she prepares for the annual spring fashion show featuring the work of juniors and seniors in the fashion department at Moore College of Art and Design — the country’s first and only women’s visual arts college for undergraduates. The show, which will be held Friday at 8 p.m. at the Barnes Foundation, is the culmination of Ortiz-González’s work in re-envisioning and re-imagining the Moore College fashion department in her first year as chair of the department.
For Ortiz-González, this past year has been one of change and challenges. In September, she watched from afar as Hurricane Maria devastated her island, causing her family in Puerto Rico to lose their home and possessions, and leaving her cut off from any knowledge of their whereabouts and well-being for several days following the natural disaster.
In the aftermath, Ortiz-González supported her family and other Puerto Ricans as much as possible, and was even able to help a design student displaced by Hurricane Maria transfer to Moore College to complete her degree. Ortiz-González has also visited the island since Maria, and is involved with a group of Puerto Rican fashion designers who are making their mark and are dedicated to contributing their art and professional expertise to their homeland as it rebuilds.
Ortiz-González said that in her work as a designer with her brand, Nasheli Juliana, as well as an educator, social consciousness and awareness about sustainability and political and environmental issues go hand-in-hand with the principles of design.
“I think we need to rethink, and we need to go a little back, in terms of design and fashion, because we cannot eat clothes, and we cannot eat money, and we need to cut [back] on fast fashion and start doing it slow, and going again to the basis of fashion that is something amazing, that has good construction, that has a message, that has power,” said Ortiz-González.
Stay tuned for more of our conversation with Nasheli Juliana Ortiz-González in a full-length article and video to be published next week. If you are interested attending the Moore College fashion show this Friday at 8 p.m. at the Barnes Foundation, follow the link here for more information.