Your work oscillates somewhere between fashion design and sculpture. Have you ever thought about becoming a sculptor?
No, I never thought about becoming a sculptor but before fashion, I studied mechanical engineering. I am fascinated by technical elements and refinements, which is also reflected in my fashion.
I want to explore the field where soft textile merges with hard metal. Sculpting the human body through fashion, so to speak.
What drew you towards fashion design as a medium?
Even in my childhood I was surrounded by fashion. My father often took me to his studio in Iran where I lived at the time. He worked there as a traditional tailor. At the age of six, however, I had to flee from my home country to Germany together with my brother. After graduating from high school, I decided to study mechanical engineering. But in my free time and to finance my studies, I continued to sew clothes for myself and friends. It was important to me to maintain and continue this tradition of my family in addition to my technical studies. The University of Design in Pforzheim took notice of my work and offered me a place to study fashion. So I followed my passion, dropped out of my mechanical engineering studies and began to study fashion design.
How are you able to capture such mysterious vibes with your collections?
I wrote my own diaries during my research on Ludwig II who always fascinated me. So I wanted to get closer to the emotional world of the fairytale king because, besides the historical aspects, I was fascinated by Ludwig‘s mental deformation, which I wanted to transfer into fashion. The importance of dreams for my design process led to a very special approach to the development. A room-sized dream catcher that I made served as a scaffold in which the fabric was stretched, allowing for precise control. The resulting shapes retained their monstrous dimensions and were developed into intricate looks. I guess this unconventional approach helped me to dive into a dream world and thus capture the mysterious vibes.
The fashion industry is going through big changes these days because of the COVID-19 pandemic and it is time for a redefinition of the meaning of fashion. What is the main purpose of fashion for you now?
Fashion was and is for me more than just clothing. It reflects social development and social meaning. For me as a designer, fashion is the visible expression of inner attitude. I understand fashion as an all-encompassing creation. As a symbiosis of clothing, jewelry, accessories and staging. But if there was one thing I could change in the fashion Industry, then it would certainly be Fast Fashion. The craft of tailoring and its appreciation have been completely lost. Fashion should not be produced and consumed according to the rule: the cheaper and faster, the better. Surplus production, environmental pollution, animal suffering and inhumane working conditions are the result. We need to go back to the roots of fashion. We need to go back to clothes with meaning, with an emotional and material value – and beyond that, to innovative material use and development. And to a craft with decent pay.
What are your plans for the future?
I am currently working on developing my own brand, have many exciting collaborations with different artists and hope that this will all develop further in the future and Aziz will grow into its own company where I can realize my ideas and bring my creativity into form.
BIO / Rebar AZIZ is a German-Iranian designer. At the age of seven he came to Germany with his brother, without personal contacts, without knowledge of the language and culture. He grew up in a handicraft family, his father still works as a tailor in Iran.
In 2013, he started his studies in BSc Mechanical Engineering at Pforzheim University School of Engineering. During this time, he started his own business selling printed sweatshirts in his home country to finance his studies. Fascinated by fashion, craftsmanship and art, he began his studies at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in 2015. During his four years of study, he acquired profound skills not only in clothing technology but also in approaching and exploring his own creativity and originality. In a remarkable way, he combined his interest in mechanics and technical functions with his curiosity and passion for fashion. He quickly developed his own approaches to the design of shapes and garments, without sacrificing a high standard of quality. In addition, his work is characterized by various interdisciplinary collaborations. In 2018, he completed an internship with Hussein Chalayan in London.
For his final collection “Ludwig II”, he developed a total of fourteen looks within four months – additionally styled with seven specific headpieces. These accessories reflect his poetic, technical approach, combining contemporary aesthetics with playful, mechanical surprises. Currently, he is working on launching his own label called AZIZ and has already realized exciting projects and collaborations with different magazines and artists.
He was also a finalist in THE ITS 2020 FASHION@WORK BY ILLY competition and can be found on the fashion platform Not Just a Label.
FASHION DESIGN / Rebar AZIZ @aziz_rebar
INTERVIEW / Kateřina Hynková @khynko
Hart Magazine @hart.magazine
Digital editing @e.memories
Assistant Photography @selmashira
Models @angelamoreeee @leoncollective