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Interview with Fashion Designer, Osman

British Fashion Designer Osman will spend 2013 experimenting with the space at his new atelier by inviting a variety of London’s cutting-edge artists and designers. The programme is set to include exhibitions, performances and other collaborations. Back in February the first part of the series was launched with multidisciplinary artist Gary Card exhibiting a solo show of paintings at the Fashion Illustration Gallery. A graduate of Central St Martins and an accomplished designer, Card whose work encompasses most fields from set design to prop-making has worked with everyone from Lady Gaga to Nick Knight as well as fashion houses and department stores including Lanvin and Lane Crawford. For Osman’s new atelier, Card presented a series of 18 vivid images, entitled The Evolution of Lula. Aesthetica speaks to Osman about his design process and his interest in collaborating with artists. 

A: How do you incorporate art into your fashion work?
O: 
There’s no clear-cut process otherwise it wouldn’t be original. Anthropological tomes are a particular favourite – seeing the way people dress, decorate, costume over the ages can be fascinating. It may be the posture of a tribal woman which may be inspiring or the shape of a Brancusi sculpture. Its capturing these silhouettes and bringing them into tailoring.

A: What was it that made you want to work with Gary Card?
O: Gary has got a fantastical imagination and his vision of a louche, eccentric heiress,  in his latest work, over the course of her lifetime was something I understood.

A: Do you think art and fashion can ever really be separated?
O: Fashion and art are separate yet both have historically made good bedfellows. Designers have always delved into the familiar artistic vocabularies past and present to convey new messages. I think artists appreciate fashion because of its ability to capture the imagination of the general public through what is essentially a quotidian need – the requirement to dress. People don’t necessarily need art but they need to dress, often interestingly. Fashion is about feeling wheres as art is about meaning. There is artistry in a garment but I am a craftsperson not an artist.

A: The programme includes exhibitions, performances and other collaborations- is this an extension of your fashion work or a new artistic venture?
O: It was an extension of our journal we publish twice-a-year, The Collective, which brings together writers, artists, photographers and other creativeS with whom I share tastes. It’s neither fashion work nor a new artistic venture but simply a space to showcase talent and tastes.

A: What was it that made you want to work with Gary Card?
O: Gary has got a fantastical imagination and his vision of a louche, eccentric heiress,  in his latest work, over the course of her lifetime was something I understood.

A: Are there any artists you’d love to collaborate with?
O: I would have loved to have collaborated with Francis Bacon. His work is very graphic yet raw work would really add another dimension and frame well within my architectural silhouettes.

A: What do you have planned for the future?
O: To continue building a dialogue with different creatives, whether its in my collections or the seasonal collectives that we publish. More to be announced shortly.

For more information about Osman and his work visit www.osmanstudio.com 

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