thesis: power suit

asian stereotypes exploited

immigrants come to Canada with high hopes and expectations, but many of them leave after failing to adapt to Canadian society. many visible minority immigrants and their descendants experience direct and indirect discrimination in day-to-day social interactions.

my thesis project looks at two particular challenges that East Asian immigrants and their descendants face when they try to integrate into the workforce in Western society.

this is PART B of the project now you see me

departure point

still from movie 'Ex Machina' - media portray of submissive East Asian female image source:

still from movie 'Ex Machina' - media portray of submissive East Asian female

image source:

sexualized, submissive East Asian females

many people in Western society acknowledge the situation obscurely but no one is addressing issues directly. some mass media forms (i.e. TV shows, movies) even use poorly portrayed East Asian images to entertain its viewers and this leads to further misunderstanding and derogatory judgement of a certain race

power suit

a bespoke suit jacket designed to emphasize on the prescriptive stereotypes that are cast upon Asian females.

the jacket has two responsive mechanisms that react to wearer’s body changes:


hormone lapel

the lapel opens the lapel when wearer gets nervous and start sweating during the interviews

it seduces the interviewer into the fantasized Asian sexual image


slouching pads

the shoulder pads fill air bags when wearer has improper postures and starts slouching during the interviews

it create the passive, submissive Asian impression


in action

technical details

the jacket and shirt mechanisms are controlled with programs that are loaded onto a Arduino board

the shirt detects wearer's motion and body changes during interviews and communicates with the jacket in real time

special thanks to avis ho for all the drafting and sewing assistances, photographer han liu and model huiru shi