s KIKIMRA - Swarm mag

KIKIMRA

The sharp, defined and technically demanding silhouettes of the dark, mostly black leather garments created by Alexandru Floarea are reminiscent of a twisted monarchy from a distant dystopian future. Enjoy an exclusive SWARM Mag interview.
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You have named Kikimra (a female house spirit) not just your newest fashion collection but also your leather goods studio. Does Slavic mythology play an important role in your creative process? 

Slavic mythology is not the main source of inspiration for my creative process in general nor my latest collection. However, Kikimra being a nocturnal spirit was associated with the collection, which is inspired by the nightlife of New York in the ’70s and‘ 80s, reflected in the photographs of Miron Zownir. For the leather accessories studio, I chose this name because I worked in parallel on these two projects and because the Kikimra spirit itself has connotations related to the aesthetics of ugliness and atypical beauty. This, in other words, could best describe the products created in this studio. And last but not least, I like it phonetically.

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What should viewers feel from your latest fashion collection?

The concept of the KIKIMRA collection mirrors the beauty that resides in the imperfection of reality. It is inspired by the desolate image of New York during the ’70s and ’80s (years characterized by an overwhelming sexual and creative energy, the gloomy world of nightlife).

The collection allows the viewer to venture into a space beyond what the eye can see. Although poetic, it is at the same time real enough to disturb and make its audience wonder and reflect.

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Being part of a society whose pace is more and more alert, the collection urges us to look beyond what we see, to appreciate the work behind a piece. Encouraging slow fashion, it aims to focus on concept, process, materials used and sustainability. The collection is guided by the desire to remain distinct from the main flow, it allows us to venture into a space beyond prejudice, blurring beauty standards, tends to produce a change in our way of perceiving ourselves and those around us.

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Which piece of your collection is most important for you and why?

It is very difficult for me to focus on one piece because they are all part of my evolution and what I was thinking at the time. All of them have a stage of creation, conception, materialization – the process until you reach the desired final shape. Even if I like some more or some less or some not at all, what matters a lot to me is the creative process that exists in each piece. But I think the most important and the most expressive pieces from the collection are „Wet Skin“ moulded leather corsets and the „Big Bubble Coat“ because these pieces summed up the biggest challenge from a technical point of view. And they are at the same time the key pieces that add sexuality and drama to the collection.

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It is obvious that black leather has become the main means of your expression. Why are you attached to this material?

I like the colour black, can’t deny it.

Leather as a material is present in every collection. Indeed, in my last collections I often opted for black leather. But I didn’t choose it at random; I chose it because it gave me the freedom to emphasize the concept behind the collection. I was preoccupied with discovering, creating new textures, so by using non-colours I was able to accentuate textures and volumes. The black colour added drama to the collection and a gloomy note. Still, I don’t want to get stuck in black, so the next project will be on a different colour range.

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You have recently won the Elle style awards 2020. What does it mean to you? What impact does this have on your career?  

First of all, I was pleasantly impressed that I was noticed by the people from the fashion industry and then to find out that I actually won in the Best Young Designer category was really amazing. Since I’m not a mainstream designer, this award has given me more visibility, collaborations with other creative people from the industry, and has given me more confidence to continue what I’m doing.

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BIO / Alexandru Floarea is a young fashion designer who graduated from the George Enescu University of Arts of Iasi, Romania. Showing an attraction to matter, he is always seeking new ways of expression through personal experiments with unconventional materials. An atmosphere of suppressed violence, lost memory, man’s disintegration, go through and out of his work. The disturbing contrasts emerge from the outfits created by the artist, which attract you in a vortex whose opening is in fact the mirror of the consciousness of each of us. Through materiality, composition, colour or structure, Floarea gives his projects an aspect of exterior beauty and ugliness of concept, expressiveness, originality and an unrepeatable mark.

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CREDITS

Fashion design / Alexandru Floarea @alexanders_flowers

Interview / Agata Zapotilová

 

PHOTO CREDITS

KIKIMIRA collection

Photographer Alexandru Floarea @alexanders_flowers

Model Lena Bannaia @lena.balena

            Nastea Bannaia @nastea.bannaia

Assistant Nastea Bannaia @nastea.bannaia

 

THE SEXUAL STATE OF MIND collection

Photographer Alexandru Floarea @alexanders_flowers

Model Lena Bannaia @lena.balena

Alexandru Ermicioi @lexobitus

Assistant Nastea Bannaia @nastea.bannaia

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