SELF EXPRESSION THROUGH THE LENS OF FASHION & ART
By Stella Lu
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Aulala is a swimwear brand featuring collaborations with artists. We love how art, as a common language, connects people of different backgrounds. At the same time, as a strong expressive tool, art helps deliver messages and evoke emotions. For each year’s collection, Aulala approaches artists from all over the world to create something fun and original together. Aesthetically, we hope these swimsuits evoke people’s recognition of their pure beauty—every body is a piece of art that should be appreciated. Just like art does not have standards, the beauty of a human being is not determined by one size or shade of skin color, either. Organically, Aulala provides a playground for the artists to create on the fashion canvas. Fashion and art, these two means of expression, are able to collide with each other, and spark creativity and positive energy.
This year, Aulala collaborated with two artists, Boris and Lola, and launched our capsule, eco-responsible collections. We sat down with these young and passionate artists recently and explored their perspectives on art and fashion.
Boris graduated as an engineering major, but his “unconsciousness” led him into the world of art. Discouraged by his family, Boris, however, has found peace and satisfaction in painting. Every night, when the city of light falls asleep, he dives into the dark and begins his showtime. His brush makes these dynamic colors come to life. A little rebellion, full of imagination, you will see graffiti with Boris’s label everywhere in Paris.
Lola is a girl who loves expression with no constraints, and that is why she turned from her architecture studies to the field of art. She does not define herself as someone “specializing” in a single form of art, as she enjoys discovering more possibilities. Above all artistic mediums, collage fascinates her the most. Art to Lola is more of a storytelling process than just a visual presentation.
Here comes Boris. You can see paints all over his tote bag and hands. His oversized T-shirt and shoes have become his personal canvas as well—consciously or not. Two little fragile floral earrings and his scruffy facial hair compose a harmoniously contradictory image. He talks in a musical tone, “Hello, I’m Boris.”
Lola’s joyful laughter arrived before her physical self and then quickly filled the entire room. Her enthusiasm and warmth go against stereotypes people hold about young French women. Her brown braided hair naturally falls onto her bare shoulder, full of energy and vitality. Talking in a husky yet bright voice, Lola invited us into her universe.
Q: What kind of means of art attracts you the most, and why?
L: Collage. To me, each old image tells an old story. I like playing with old images to create new ones. They may have been forgotten with time, but when I collect them, tear them, fold them, and rematch them, the stories that they used to carry are heard again. Each layer of the collage opens a new door and leads to a new plot. I enjoy traveling in the small and complicated world that I create.
Q: What is your latest project? What is the inspiration behind it?
B: I focused on the constant struggle between humans and nature. To establish it, I collected metals and plastics from the street and made sculptures out of them. I imagine a human dystopia where devastating human nature devours mother nature. As a result, only metals/rocks in the shape of flowers remain, which are the traces of their previous existence, just like fossils of dinosaurs.
Q: So you are trying to raise people’s awareness of human destruction of nature?
B: Yes, and the primary materials that I use are the “trash” abandoned by people. I hope to invite people to reflect on the endless human activities, for even a few seconds. Another project is an installation connecting a sword and an apple, made out of “trash,” of course. When you take the apple away, the sword comes out, and you’ll hurt yourself.
Q: Why do you collaborate with Aulala?
L: It is really cool to combine fashion and art to generate something special. Adding no more products to the fast-fashion world, we together present something very personal and hopefully long-lasting, which contains our beliefs and messages. What we create is more than a garment.
Q: Do you support slow/ethical fashion in life? If so, how?
B: Of course, I support slow fashion. You can tell that I don’t buy clothes a lot (laugh). I enjoy shopping in thrift shops. At first, I didn’t do it on purpose. Nowadays, I only do it because it is better for the environment—and more fun! There is no reason to create more “trash” when there is so much good stuff out there.
L: For sure because fast fashion is terrible. It’s better to have good quality clothes and to know where and how they were produced than to have a lot of “sh*t.” It’s better if new clothes are created from waste (using recycled materials) than to create more waste.