Bow down to the future titans of fashion, whose diverse designs find their inspiration in sea creatures, seductresses, and Solaris.
In September 2012, New York–based Spanish designer Sabela Tobar graduated from the ArtEZ Institute of the Arts in the Netherlands. She’s since been hard at work on her debut collection, “Waltzing Lights,” which was inspired by the lifecycle of jellyfish. “The growth process, the metamorphosis, is what I wanted to represent in the clothes,” says Tobar, 28. “I’m also fascinated by the duality of these beautiful creatures being so deadly.”
Juun.J’s Spring/Summer 2013 collection from was inspired by Akira Kurosawa’s mob film Drunken Angel. Many of the designs, at once militaristic and androgynous, embraced a lighter color palette, but 44-year-old Korean designer insists nothing will ever replace black. “Black will always be the new black, no matter how many years pass,” he says. “Still, khaki is very chic.
Canadian designer Ryan Mercer, 32, presented his first collection last year at London’s Royal College of Art graduate show. “I mixed tailored and cropped pieces with oversized jackets that have an ’80s vibe,” says Mercer, who was influenced by films like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. “There were a lot of leather jackets in that film. The work of artist Josef Albers inspired the bold color blocking, and I tried to maintain a strong, saturated sense of color by primarily using leather and python for the garments. I also introduced texture by edging certain pieces with leather cording.”
Born and raised in Switzerland, 25-yearold Cosima Gadient presented her debut collection as part of the graduate show at Basel’s Academy of Art and Design. Titled “GENEV.,” the collection exudes “danger and passion,” according to the young designer. “She’s a femme fatale characterized by her power, intelligence, and coldness,” says Gadient of the “GENEV.” woman. “Her appearance is mysterious and sublime. You’d better watch out—she’ll ruin you to get what she wants.”
AISLIN G FARRELL
At 24, Tokyo-based British designer Aisling Farrell has already shown her designs to critical acclaim at 2012’s London Fashion Week. Of her latest collection, the Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design graduate says, “It’s based on the natural phenomenon of static electricity. My primary aim was to harness this force and the interaction between different materials at an atomic level to create a kinetic display.”
Since graduating from London’s Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design, Milan-based Sergei Grinko has displayed his collections during Milan Fashion Week and has been featured in Vogue Italia. “It’s called ‘Solaris’ in homage to the celebrated 1961 novel by Stanisław Lem, says Grinko, 39, of his Spring/Summer 2013 collection. “Solaris is the story of profound harmony between a human being and nature. It’s a philosophical work first, and a captivating narrative second, in which we’re meant to contemplate the miracle of Earth and its trees, flowers, rivers, rain, and leaves. Nature manifests in the clothes through prints on silk that pair botanical colors like lavender, peach, and pale green.”