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Victoria Popova: Fashion Design as a symbiosis of imagination and constructivism

turquoise ether magazine 

Every contemporary designer faces insurmountable dichotomies — modernity/nostalgic past; own statement/conscious reference; fluid imagination/strict constructivism and so on. Honest search for their artistic language forces designers to search (or lose?) themselves in a similar set of conventions. These searches are able to open up bright personalities to the world.

Designer Victoria Popova is an illustrative example of a selfless search for her style, a set of techniques, themes and a unique artistic world. “Between” is a key term to describe Victoria’s design practice.

She deftly balances BETWEEN styles of different decades (90s, 00s, 10s); BETWEEN different conceptual approaches (ready-made, deconstruction of social functions of clothing); BETWEEN different techniques (use of prints, rough seams, collage); BETWEEN different popcultural stylistics (punk, pop, casual). However, the final result does not become an eclectic hodgepodge. The final result is an incredible combination of aesthetic integrity and thoughtfulness of design and details.

The Conversations in Between men’s clothing collection by Victoria Popova (June 2022) is an outstanding illustration of the stylistic intersection described above.

The photo shoots of the collection were published in Blueprint and Wonderzine magazines and participated in the Degree Show 2022 digital exhibition.

The collection is a story about the growing up of a millennial, which is told through memories. These memories exist in the form of references to the culture of the late 90s and early 00s: MTV, alternative music, freak TV shows, satirical cartoons for adults, punk, metal, skate culture. At the same time, these memories interact with modernity. The image of modernity is expressed through the elements of the office clerk’s wardrobe.

The millennial grew up and became an office worker. But he continues to keep in his soul the spirit of punk, the spirit of youth. This spirit is under control, but periodically breaks out through various design solutions of this collection: deconstructed shirts, an asymmetrical jacket, reimagined jeans, men’s dresses and skirts.

The Conversations in Between collection is an honest and touching statement about the lost time, the search for a personal fulcrum, the relationship between the external and internal inside a sensitive man. Victoria carefully treats the emotional background of potential buyers of her collection. She suggests using the past not as artifacts of manipulative nostalgia (this is often the sin of modern post-capitalism). She offers a strategy opposite to self-dissolution in the sweet and sticky images of the beautiful past. Everyone should find a balance between the past and the present and use elements of nostalgia and actual modernity to construct a personal fulcrum in adult life. This is a very humanistic message masterfully expressed through a collection of clothes.

As a designer, Victoria appears before us in the dual image of a superanalytical constructivist and a sensitive researcher of the worlds of her own imagination. This duality and the combination of different contexts, styles, approaches, philosophical concepts help Victoria to expand the space of modern design.

You can find the works of Victoria Popova at the following links:

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