London design duo inspire students

Third year fashion and textile students at Gray’s School of Art have showcased their work to a top fashion duo who have dressed the likes of Nicole Kidman and Katy Perry.

The students showed off their work yesterday (Thurs, Nov 20) to Antoni Burakowski and Alison Roberts, who founded London-based label Antoni & Alison in 1987, after they were set a live brief of ‘What Shape is Colour?’ by the duo.

The design team, who used the same theme for their own Autumn/Winter collection this year, has become a top name on the UK fashion scene, with their own store, 220 stockists and a large following in Japan and Europe. They have also just seen the first 10 years of their archive snapped up by the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Student April Hay (20) focused her designs on the colour orange, as it consistently appeared in her research photos. She said: “I considered how I could incorporate the idea of segments into my garment without just printing a piece of fruit on it.

“The word segment comes from the Latin ‘secare’, meaning to cut – the cut out areas of my garments are to show the removal of segments from a piece rather than simply adding them.”

Rebecca Shaw (22) said she had taken inspiration from the changeable nature of colour in her design. She said: “My main inspiration is a video that I captured of wind catchers in Camden Market. The objects are constructed in a way that when they move they alter and change and that’s what intrigues me about them.

“It has been an amazing opportunity to work on a live project with such a renowned design team. It shows you the pressures of working for a real client and a lot of other art schools don’t always get to do that.”

Antoni said: “This is a proper art school. We are perpetual students and we like to still get our hands grubby from time to time. We see ourselves as being outside of fashion so it is nice for us to come to a less obvious place like this where there is so much creativity and enthusiasm and a real hunger to learn.

“The idea of the brief was to really allow them to be free, to let them see that they can take inspiration from anything.”

Alison added: “It is just a delight to come up to this beautiful place. The students have presented their work extremely well.”

Course leader Rachel Heeley said: “It is absolutely amazing to have such a well-established brand such as Antoni & Alison do a live project with us. The students have done a fantastic job and have really stepped up to the professional level which we expect at this stage of their degree.”

Antoni & Alison were awarded MBEs in 2008 for their work in fashion and have seen their pieces worn by celebrities and artists such as Nicole Kidman, Katy Perry, Chloe Sevigny and Kiki Smith.

Release by
Jenny Rush

Communications Officer | Design and Technology

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