Designer Profile: Roberto Piqueras
During a guerrilla-style-show at London Fashion Week, Spanish designer Roberto Piqueras, showcased his twelfth collection. Garments were decorated with a bold combination of psychedelic prints accentuated by neon tones. The AW13 collection pays homage to symbols of pop art, tribal tattoos with a 3D twist, video games, Japanese culture, high fashion brands and the most well-known drinks from around the world. Silhouettes included oversized t-shirts with relaxed skinny leggings, second-skin shirts, track suit pants and bomber jackets – encompassing every aspect of Piqueras and furthering the sense of non-determinate sex in his collections, giving to his signature sense of androgyny.
How did you get involved with the fashion industry?
I remember my first contact with fashion; I watched Paris Fashion Week on TV – Jean Paul Gaultier and Dior shows during the 90’s. The first time I felt involved in fashion was when I decided to study Fashion Design in Barcelona. During my last year of academics I worked as a style assistant for different magazines.
Is it more important for you to hold guerrilla/public shows rather than private previews?
I’ve held private shows and previews during my career in Spain – it was working for press, but not for customers. I stopped this and started showing in art galleries – more people were interested in my work. To use a public space is a way to show how free we are as human beings. The last two times I’ve held public shows we were kicked out, even during London Fashion Week at Somerset House.
Roberto’s public show at the British Museum – September 2012.
How to you select your models that tend to have an interesting look?
Casting is online – tumblr, instagram and twitter – that way I find the look of a new generation.
When designing, who or what is your inspiration?
My experience, street culture, and friends. The AW13 collection is inspired by my childhood, colour explosion, religion, and personal perception of the impact of Barcelona.
Are there any fashion-related differences between Britain and Spain?
The big difference is the support from other artists involved in fashion. There are stylist, designers, graphic designers and people working in the music industry, in Britain, who really love my work – it’s not just because they are my friends. This difference makes my business more real.
How do you bring your inspiration into reality?
I’m more practical, I first think about the shapes; t-shirts, jackets, tops, bottoms etc. and then I choose a theme and work on five different prints.
Is your use of British symbolism (digital prints of the Queen and the Olympic rings) a conscience celebration of what’s current in Britain?
When I designed the Queen print, it was a tribute to how people see London from the outside and the differences between west and east. I didn’t know about the Queen diamond jubilee, so it was a really good coincidence. I made the Olympic rings design during my career in Spain, it was a tribute or critic of the Olympic Games held in Barcelona in 1992, at the time it felt as if nothing else was happening in the city. I like to use symbols from the city I’m currently living in, that’s why my work right now and my SS13 collection has the elements of Blighty.
What do you think about British street style?
I’m really excited to see fashion on the streets, not just on the internet or at parties. That’s the cool thing about London – people can be as different or individual as they like. It’s a really interesting point about this city!
Who are some of your favourite designers?
I respect Castelbajac, Raf Simons, Margiela and the earlier work of Jeremy Scott. I’m also interested in Maria K Fisherman, MEAT and Mary Benson.
Who does the future told for you as a designer and brand?
Right now, I’ve finished the new Spring/Summer collection to launch in London in September, not yet decided where and how. This time it is going to have a more Spanish feel that usual. Reebok, as always, continue to back my projects.
As a brand I’m preparing a DJ tour around Canada and the USA thanks to HTC ONE X – I’m an ambassador of the brand. I’m preparing to film the experience on my phone and share it as a video blog.
Words: Joshwa Saint James
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