Headwear has long played a role in indicating the class, status and occupation of the wearer - enforcing conformity and erasing individuality. From the 18th century poke bonnet which restricted women's field of vision, to today's hijab, women in particular have been subjugated to fashion dictates and social norms. Colella's headwear sculptures become a vehicle for a subversive coded language which addresses the play between women's visibility and invisibility.
These pieces were originally inspired by the collections of Historic Northampton for the exhibition Unidentified Woman. The newest addition, Call Me Rose, continues to reinforce themes of identity and expression in the Dressed exhibit at Danforth Art Museum at Framingham State University. Top row L to R: Poke, 35x16x16 in., found patches, wool flannel shirt, buckram, threads, 2017; Bottom row: Fencing, 32X16x16 in., wire, mixed fibers, crochet, 2017; Bushel, 13x12x12, millinery straw, nylon, thread, 2017; Wink, 14x8x11, millinery straw, wool, 2017; Call Me Rose, 32x29x23, Assorted garment textiles, wire, threads, mannequin as pedestal - 2019