CookiesWe use cookies to make it easier for you to browse our website. If you, as a user, visit our website, it is our understanding that you are granting your consent to the use of cookies. You may obtain more information on cookies and their use hereOK
Working full-time as a fashion designer has been a long journey for Hari Krishnan, Indian-born and now London-based creative has an unusual vision for menswear, as he describes it as a "viewpoint detached from the stereotypical human perspective". At first glance he might be seen as a balloon-trouser designer, but we shouldn’t be fooled by that first contact with his work, since he shows the importance of joy and emotion in fashion and has a new collection up his sleeve.

Whilst he is not defined by his heritage or materials, it is interesting to note Kerela is one of two communist states in India and accounts for 85% of India's production of rubber. Whilst the manual labour required in hand-done production creates low and difficult working conditions on the rubber tree farms, the material's entry into high fashion as latex provides an exciting new story and hopefully a change. Here, we speak about accidentally joining the London College of Fashion, how dogs see us and more.
Before we dive into deeper questions, could you give us an outline from your life in Kerala, India, to moving to London and what the process has been like?
A long journey! I just find it very odd and sometimes funny that I come from a small village in South Kerala [Kollam] with no exposure to fashion. However, my dad used to do artwork for local commercials, which inspired me to sketch and visualise things from a very young age.
In 2016 right after graduation from the National Institute of Fashion, India, I started assisting International Woolmark Prize winner Suket Dhir in New Delhi, opening many possibilities and learnings. I believe I learned more than what I learned from BA in just six months at his atelier, and it set the right environment. In 2017, I accidentally got into the London College of Fashion while accompanying my partner for her interviews. Fast forward, and now I make balloon pants for a living!
Right after graduating from London College of Fashion in 2020, you launched the infamous balloon-shaped pants. What led you to that idea? What did you want to express with this?
My creations are about forging a different reality. They let me perceive the world differently, more like from another viewpoint entirely detached from the stereotypical notions of the human perspective, arousing curiosity.
Craftsmanship is key for the confection of your garments, as it is quite visible in the air-filled pants and the beaded shirts. Working next to artisans from Channapatna, from your natal India, how did you blend together both British and Indian savoir-faire?
I believe it comes from being exposed to many cultures, both from a geographical point of view and a material culture point of view. Today when I see things, I can perceive them from multiple perspectives simultaneously; these perspectives reflect my work.

To reach said craftsmanship, materials are as important as technique. We can see latex and wool on the pants and tinted beads. What made you choose these?
Oh! It would be difficult to describe my material choices as they are momentary, and it constantly shifts. However, I try to appreciate everything and try a lot to master as many materials as possible. For example, I never thought I would work with a material like latex, which always has a fetish aspect associated with it, but now I appreciate the fabric very much, and we get along really well. As far as my process is concerned, I appreciate forms and their beauty. So be it anything in front of me; the form is the first visual aspect that reaches my eyes second to materiality.
Taking a look at your work, I personally see circus-like elements, Bauhaus imagery and a certain campiness to it. What are the inspirations behind your label?
When I think to create, I try to stretch the boundaries or the perception of boundaries that we give ourselves. The first idea about the trouser came from this humorous thought of visualising me from my dog's perception, and that one thought led me from the venuses of Willendorf to Bauhaus to Jean-Paul Goude.
Your popularity blew up in 2020 because of your graduate collection, yet we haven't seen new pieces from you since then. When might we see a new collection?
The whole process of creating a collection is the struggle between challenges and surprises. One side is about making something accessible and based in reality, and then the other side is to create an emotion and make something that I am excited about when I see it. Sometimes I just wonder if it ever goes well. While working on concepts, one day, I think something is the most amazing thing, and then a few days later, it's the worst or has been done before.
Answering your question, I just came to London after a year break to work on the following collection, so hopefully in the next six months.

You've stated before that the way you see fashion is through the lens of the power of imagery and narrative. Could you give us a little insight about it?
Back in 2020, when I launched my collection, it was the beginning of the pandemic, and the world was sad. Yet that collection put a smile on a lot of faces. So for me, that's just the idea. Nobody cared about the material or the technicalities; all they saw was this image, and that's my style — an image-making approach to fashion, appreciating forms around the body, interplaying reality and fantasy yet keeping it approachable.
You aren't just a fashion designer, but you're also a stylist. What are the different aspects of working as a designer and as a stylist?
I believe both practices are, in a way, about storytelling. I am not a stylist by profession, but I try to mix various visual elements that are quite contrasting within my work.
When you look at fashion, what are you looking for from it? As a designer, stylist and overall artist, I mean.
Honestly, I am still seeking what fashion is and is about. Being a designer means a never-ending inquest about everything around. However, today, I look at Fashion from two perspectives: A maker and an image creator, and I always try to balance these two aspects in my work and my practices.
Before this collection, my perception of fashion was from a mere product point of view; however, after it, I realised it’s so impactful that you can directly influence someone's emotions in that space of time. You can make someone excited or make them hate something just in response to your creations.
What does your future look like? Let's say, maybe in the next 5 years maybe?
Absolutely no clue! I count days.

Maria Antón

ic_eye_openCreated with Sketch.See commentsClose comments
0 resultados