Born in 1971 in New Hampshire, Tess Giberson may have had the arts in her blood: her parents were artists who raised their family to focus on traditional craftsmanship and creativity.
After graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design 1996, Giberson moved to New York and began her career working at Calvin Klein as a sweater designer for the Men’s Collection. She then freelanced for a couple of years until starting her own collection in 2001. The following year, she received one of the first Ecco Domani Fashion Awards.
The Tess Giberson collection is known for its experimentation and attention to detail, as well as for its collaborations with artists and musicians (this includes her husband, artist Jon Widman, and her sister Petrova Giberson). The earlier works of Christo heavily influenced the line: “I like that idea that you don’t really know what’s underneath,” Giberson explained. Her fashion shows, meanwhile, incorporated music, writing, video, performance and installation, in an attempt to move beyond the presentation of a single collection to something that encompassed multiple fields of experience and art.
She put this line on hold in 2005 to work as the Design Director at TSE. The Tess Giberson collection, however, was re-launched in 2010, with a renewed focus on minimal tailoring and the layering of various textures. This approach produces a modern but seemingly effortless timelessness to the line.
Both the design and art communities have recognized Giberson for her multi-dimensional approach. In 2003 she was included in the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum Triennial and nominated for the 2003 National Design Award for clothing. Her collections have also been exhibited in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and Taka Ishii Gallery in Tokyo.
In 2011 Giberson was nominated by the London Design Museum for the Brit Insurance Design Awards.
Shop Tess Giberson at Cahier d’Exercises.