The Queen of Less

翻译:Agnes GE  

这是一次罕见的,深度的与时装设计师Jil Sander的访问。由柏林作家兼时尚编辑JAN KEDVES担任采访者:

Jil Sander被人们看作是’极简女王’ (The Queen of Less): 作为女装设计师她的风格在节制和优雅之间达到了平衡点。她在品牌被普拉达集团收购后两次回归自己的同名品牌又两次离开也为圈内人津津乐道。这次在德国法兰克福Museum Angewandte Kunst (应用艺术博物管; 展览截止到2018年5月6日)是Sander女士目前为止第一个也是唯一的个展,主题‘Präsens’ ,即“现在时”。为了讨论这次的展览,我在上 Harvestehude街区的Hamburg 别墅中约见了Jil Sander女士——这也是她为数甚少的一次采访——此地也是她咨询公司的所在。

Jan Kedves (以下用 JK 表示):一个不断将品牌向未来的方向编织的设计师现在开了一个回顾展,而这个回顾展却一点儿也不想怀旧。因为展览的名字 “Present Tense” 是“当下”的意思。

Jil Sander(以下用JS表示) :我从来不喜欢往回看,除非是为了从过去中思考如何创新。我总是在为公司的事情处在极度忙碌的状态。你不会相信,我是会亲自去试身我的每一件服装的,即使在我将公司上市以后。一个在博物馆里的展览从来不是我想要的:人体模特套上旧衣服被来来往往的人观瞻。这对我来说太了无生趣。而法兰克福似乎对的地方,因为我的品牌起步时就是作为德国品牌。同时这座城市的规划和建筑和包豪斯的历史有着紧密连接,是很现代的。而作为办展场地的应用艺术博物馆(Museum Angewandte Kunst)中的这座Richard Meier的建筑作品也是让我信服的原因之一。

 

museumangewandtekunst2_foto_anja_jahn_6

(上图Richard Meier在1985年为Museum Angewandte Kuns设计的建筑)

JK: 就如同你的设计一样,这场展览中你似乎拒绝将每个空间都填满。

JS: 但纯粹的极简主义对我来说是不够的。那样太冷酷,太缺少感情了。一个空房间只会在,比如说,拥有完美的内在比例结构才感觉对。这在时尚世界中同理。你面对的永远是同样的形式:夹克,大衣,衬衫。而不同就在于剪裁和对面料的创新。即使最后出来的东西看起来是很轻松简单的,我们却深知看起来毫不费力是多困难的一件事。

 

JK: 即使过去了三十年,你的设计,和那些在米兰举办的花生骚也从未显得过时,这实在很让人赞叹。通常,时尚的变化标志着时代的更迭。你如何解释“永不过时的摩登”这种自相矛盾的说法?

JS: 我当然希望这次展览可以有一定的收效。对于你所说的这种矛盾性我也非常注意。我常说我设计的白衬衫从没有两件是相同的,因为设计的细节和比例总会反映着时代。面料的发展也带来持续的革新。每一季的新时尚都可以看似是”永不过时的摩登”,但仍旧,在一段时间后会看起来陈旧。因为,我们的眼睛会本能地对熟悉的事物失去新鲜感。

JK: 你还记得50年前是什么激发了你开始从事设计工作吗?要知道你的大学专业是纺织工程学,之后做的是时装编辑。到底是什么原因让你觉得没人能做出你想要的那种设计,所以非得自己操刀设计不可呢?

JS: 知者随事而制。7,80年代流行的女装剪裁是有问题的,因为他们将过时的女性化刻板印象强加给女人。所以与其煞费苦心地到处寻找我心目中的女装,不如根据我自己的想法设计来得简单。同样的,我也不喜欢当时的女装面料。那时的我作为一个年轻的女人,男装中使用的面料给了我很多的灵感去花时间研发不限性别的面料。不过说到我最早的启发,那是我还在当时装编辑的时候。当时为了我的时装大片可以更上镜,我天真地去找服装生产商建议他们修改衣服。也由此将我引向了首个设计工作。

JK: 你那时为哪家时尚杂志工作呢?

JS: 我先为一家叫Constance的杂志工作,然后是Petra。两家杂志都是由Humburg的Gruner & Jahr出版。Petra杂志至今还在。在那时候,60年代中期,算是很摩登的杂志。当我负责时尚大片的制作时,我会去服装厂家厚脸皮地要求他们为我改动衣服的细节,为了出来的照片更好看。着也意味着我和那些服装生产厂家一直维持着紧密的关系。随后我开始做起了特约设计师,终于我想:我可以成为真正的设计师。

 

JK: 本次展览亦包含了一些关于你不太为人知晓的,传记性质的细节:你在大学毕业以后和成为时装编辑之前,你去美国加州待了一年。那个时候是什么让你决定去加州呢?

JS: 我当时注册了UCLA(加州大学洛杉矶分校)的课程,在那里你想学什么课程都可以。我作为外国交换生住在寄宿家庭中。我父亲对我这个决定很怀疑,他给我买了一辆大众车,让我就待在德国。但几个月后,我告诉他车子他可以留着,而我最终还是想去加州。这是一次非常重要的决定;在加州的经历让我变得更加笃定和确信。我飞去加州的时候是我人生第一次搭飞机。我像个婴儿一样好奇。对于当时的西德而言,加州的生活态度只出现在海报里。我爱那种自由的感觉,像是身处一切规则之外——那里没人会束缚你,例如没人会告诉你必须要准时。对那时的我而言,加州是不分等级的地方,至少从着装上不会有反映,因为在那样的气候下所有人都穿得极其休闲。我被那个世界的肉体所深深吸引,那些各类的运动项目,那种漫不经心,还有那里的光线。

JK: 能不能说你的设计里也有加州的影子?

JS: 也许你可以看做是我希望将加州美好和活力的生活传达到欧洲的服装系统中,虽然德国的天气并不如加州的热情。这也是为什么我不去装饰衣服,而是通过摩登的剪裁让身体的存在突显。我是在尝试着去除身体的神秘感。

 

JK: 在这次展览中,那张Peter Lindbergh 1991年为你捕捉的著名照片也出现在里面,相片中你抓起大衣的领子用它护住脖颈。还有这次展览中有一间放置黑毡人体模特的房间,里面展示了一件大衣,大衣领子内侧有一篇镀金字的文章,是关于服装的。这本来不显眼,但只要风一吹,领子被翻折过来,人们的目光立刻被吸引过去。还有你在09到11年和优衣库合作的 J+ 系列中最被人们熟知的就是超轻质的羽绒夹克。这些设计都体现了保护身体御寒的目的。

JS: 你的这些观察很有趣。在我很年轻的时候,我就对于男装中不示人的里衬几乎比衣服的外在更重要这一点着迷不已:所有的精致做工,品牌标签和缝线都在衣服里面藏着。我非常喜欢这种衣服内里保藏了所有这些秘密的感觉。

而说到保护,我总认为穿着过渡装饰的服装是有些让人困扰的,这多少显示了穿着者的炫耀和缺乏安全感。而更节制和内敛的风格似乎是更适合我的。这一方面和我自己北德的出生有关,同时这也是我作为年轻的事业女性上的需要。当我去和那些美国的百货公司集团商谈时,我希望站在平等的角度和他们交流,而不是像个盛装打扮穿着俗丽衣服的小女生。更内敛的色彩和纯粹的剪裁让让我获得对方的尊重。

   
 英文原文:
A rare, in-depth interview with fashion designer Jil Sander
Jil Sander is known as the ‘Queen of Less’: a designer who achieved a balance between sobriety and elegance in women’s fashion. She’s also known as the designer who returned to her brand twice after it was no longer hers. On view at Frankfurt’s Museum Angewandte Kunst (through 6 May 2018) is Sander’s first ever exhibition ‘Präsens’ (Present Tense). To discuss the show, I met Sander – who gives interviews only very rarely – in the Hamburg villa in upscale Harvestehude district where her consulting firm is based. Jan Kedves  A designer who programmatically set her logo in Futura opens a retrospective that doesn’t want to be retrospective at all. ‘Present Tense’ means ‘now’. Jil Sander  I was never interested in looking back, but in asking what can be made new. I was also always extremely busy running my company. Believe it or not, I fitted every piece myself, even after we went public. A museum exhibition was never what I had in mind: old clothes on mannequins with people walking past them. Too lifeless for me. Frankfurt seemed right because we started out as a German label. The city is modern in its urban planning and architecture, with close ties to the Bauhaus. The Richard Meier building at the Museum Angewandte Kunst is also part of what convinced me. JK  As with your design, in the exhibition you seem to resist the temptation to fill every empty space. JS  But purely minimal is also too little for me. It becomes too cool, too lacking in emotion. An empty room only works, for example, when it has excellent proportions. Then you can put in a chair and it’s perfect. It’s the same with fashion. You’re always working with the same forms: the jacket, the coat, the shirt. It’s always about a modern cut and an innovative use of materials. Even if the things end up looking easy and simple, we ultimately know how difficult it is to make things appear effortless. JK  It’s remarkable that your designs, and the compilations of runway shows presented in Milan, never look ‘old’, though some are over three decades old. Normally, fashion marks the passage of time. Can you make any sense of the paradox ‘timelessly modern’? JS  I hoped that the exhibition would have this effect. I’m very aware of the paradox you mention. I’ve always said I would never design the same white blouse twice, because the zeitgeist is reflected in details and proportions. The development of fabrics brings constant innovation, too. You can develop new fashions season after season that seem ‘timelessly modern’ and nonetheless look old after a while. Our eyes, however subconsciously, are good at distinguishing what’s familiar from what’s new. JK  Can you still remember the very first thing that inspired you to start designing clothing 50 years ago? You’d studied textile engineering and worked as a fashion editor. What is it that you simply had to make yourself because nobody else was making it? JS  Everything needed to be done differently. The cuts in women’s fashion at the time were problematic because they typecast women as feminine in an old-fashioned way. It was simpler to design according to my own ideas than to painstakingly seek out existing clothing that fit my needs. I didn’t like the fabrics, either. As a young woman, men’s fabrics inspired me to spend time developing more androgynous fabrics. But as far as my first inspiration, it was while I was working as a fashion editor. Because I wanted to have more photogenic designs for my fashion spreads, I naïvely suggested alterations to the manufacturers. This led to my first design jobs. JK  Which fashion magazines did you edit? JS  First Constanze, and then Petra. Both magazines were published by Gruner & Jahr in Hamburg. Petra still exists. Back then, in the mid-’60s, it was a modern magazine. When I produced a fashion spread, I would go to the clothing manufacturers and cheekily ask them to change one detail or another for me to better photograph the clothes. This meant I always maintained good contact with manufacturers. Then I started with freelance design, and finally I thought: I can do this myself. JK  The exhibition also includes a biographical detail about you that is not very well known: you went to California for a year after university, before you were a fashion editor. What led you to California at that time? JS  I was enrolled at UCLA, where you could study whatever you wanted. I stayed with a host family as a foreign exchange student. My father was skeptical. He had given me a VW and told me to stay in Germany. But after a few months I told him he could keep the car, I wanted to go to California after all. This was a very important decision; the time I spent in California made me more decisive and assertive. When I flew there, it was the first time I’d ever taken an airplane. Like a baby. In West Germany at that time, the California attitude and lifestyle was familiar only from posters. I loved this sense of freedom, this dream of being outside all the rules – nobody telling you things like ‘you have to be punctual’. California was a world without hierarchies, too, at least as far as clothing was concerned, because dress codes are extremely relaxed in that climate. I was especially enthralled by the physicality of that world, by its different kind of sportiness, this casualness and also the light. JK  Would you say that California is reflected in your design? JS  Perhaps you could say that I wanted to translate something from this beautiful, dynamic life into European clothing even though the climate in Germany was less hospitable. That’s why I didn’t decorate the clothing, but rather let a bodily presence come to the fore through modern cuts. I was trying to demystify the physical. JK  In the famous Peter Lindbergh portrait from 1991, which appears on posters for ‘Present Tense’, you clutch the collar of your coat protectively in front of your neck. In the room with the black felt mannequins, there’s a coat with gold plating on the inside of the collar. It’s an inconspicuous article of clothing that then becomes eye-catching when the wind blows and the collar is folded over. And the +J collection that you designed for Uniqlo from 2009 to 2011 was known above all for its ultralight down jackets. These are designed for protection from the cold. JS  Those are lovely observations. Very early in my youth, I became fascinated with the way that, in menswear, the unseen interior is almost more important than the external appearance: the workmanship, the designer’s label or the lining. I like it very much when clothing harbours those sorts of secrets. As far as protection is concerned, I’ve always found excessive ornamentation and decoration bothersome because they display the wearer’s ostentation or insecurity. A bit more restraint and cohesion seemed more appropriate to me. This was in keeping with my native Hanseatic northern Germany, and it’s also what I myself needed as a young businesswoman. When I was negotiating with American department store groups, I wanted to interact with them on an equal footing and not as some little lady decked out in pretty frippery. Reserved colours and purist cuts earned me respect.

A.G

Founder & Editor of AGNES' SELECT

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