VISORE is an all-encompassing entity that bridges different creative disciplines towards a very nuanced kind of aestheticism. Tell us how you envisioned VISORE at its naissance and give us some insight into what the VISORE culture means to you.
I envisioned VISORE as a multidisciplinary start-up that helps fashion brands create the connection between creativity and technology without compromising on their identity. The VISORE culture is built on the collaboration of diverse talents. As Raf Simons says: “when you’re a fashion designer, you do fashion. When you’re an artist you do your sculpture, painting or whatever. Over the years it can become a system”. At VISORE, we play with the system. It’s the beauty of the process. From the make-up artist to the developer that works on the back end of the platform – we want to give space to everybody who contributes to the creation of a story and give visibility to the chain that is behind it all. VISORE is a house full of people from different complementary industries: we want to empower this spirit. In 2021, we can’t speak about fashion anymore without acknowledging all the people that work behind the scenes.
What sort of gaps did you observe in the fashion industry and what makes VISORE so well-equipped in addressing these gaps?
It’s obvious that the fashion industry was not prepared for a pandemic, there are many gaps that became quite evident. Take the example of an emerging designer, it often happens that it’s a “one-person show”: from all the possible implications of designing a collection to the actual launch, promotion, etc. The challenge comes down to creating content with limited physical resources, and we wanted to step in and help young brands and designers with concrete multidimensional solutions for their growth.
Approaching fashion through a digital experience can be quite complex as it requires the expertise to capture forms, textures, and proportions that would normally be accessed in person. In what ways do you strive to achieve such immersion through this outlet and what is your ideology on presenting fashion via digital platforms and technology in general?
Well, now “digital” is the standard. There’s no ideology behind it. If you think about it, you find the digital aspect in all experiences. Without making an obvious difference between online (point A) and offline (point B). People lining up outside stores were probably targeted by a sponsored campaign from an influencer’s profile that evoked the impulse of buying. At VISORE, we design fiction whenever we are in our creative process, we try to interpret these two worlds and create a “homogenous” reality containing the online and offline realms. Recently we made “Space Oddity” an editorial where Nik Gundersen, a member of our creative lab, incorporated a fully CGI environment. We tried illustrating the products in the most humane way possible, capturing textures and proportions as you say, but stepping in with the innovative touch.
What kind of design elements specific to VISORE are important to you to incorporate in the various creative campaigns and content?
There’s no magic formula. It’s all about creating stories that are aligned with our vision of how we want to see our community wearing the products of the talented brands featured on VISORE X. The rhythm is dictated by the creation of a bond between the viewer and the creator. We want to create a story while valuing the nature of the product and not the other way around. For example, in “Vault” we have reimagined a living space creating a CGI city playing with contrasts between the colorful products and the bold environment.
Tell us about some of your most notable works and how you have witnessed VISORE flourish since its humble beginnings?
Before the pandemic hit and even before the whole concept of VISORE was set, I was already asking myself what a new-era magazine would look like, how a magazine should react to the digital transformation, the rise of social commerce, and what role sustainability should play. Looking back, the past twelve months have been a rollercoaster. Pre-pandemic, we were fantasizing about bringing the fashion and hospitality industries together. And then, COVID gave us a reality check. Luckily, we managed to partner up with the Pullman Hotel Group in Shanghai and created VISORE X PULLMAN, a collaborative platform that made fashion content accessible for hotel guests in China. It’s not the biggest project that we have done but I’m very proud that we were able to bring fashion and hospitality a bit closer during these challenging times. Having launched two digital platforms under the VISORE umbrella in 2020 has taught me that working with the right people who stand by the same vision is the proper way to grow.
The human form is fluid and thus are the garments we adorn it with. When it comes to creative direction among VISORE’s productions, can you inform us of the implications of body inclusivity and the narrative you wish to impart upon viewers about the subject?
As much as I hate to admit, being exposed to the Parisian fashion scene has given me a reality check when it comes to this. At the beginning, I thought we could cultivate body inclusivity in our editorials, but it’s been a struggle for my team and me to work with agencies that allow us to showcase body positivity. We believe that the acceptance of all bodies regardless of size or appearance shall become the norm, but this spirit needs to take place in every step of the chain. The brand owner needs to envision an inclusive “all sizes collection” and model agencies need to have a higher density of body diversity. Because of this, I’ve decided to take another path and be in constant dialogue with organizations that support body representation in fashion in order to push brands and agencies to change their agenda.
As technology continues to advance and we are seeing more integrations such as virtual showcases and CGI runways, how do you feel about the future of interweaving fashion and technology? What are your thoughts on the possibilities that exist there?
The real issue is to understand where the value of technology is so you can smartly use it to evoke and underline emotions. Of course, it also depends on who you’re trying to speak to. Some people just feel alienated from technology, feel it’s “overly used” and lean towards a conservative approach, and others – like Gen Z’s – worshipped entire CGI shows such as the one from GCDS. Speaking of a way to transcribe the tangible into digital, technology should not be a tool that only serves convenience but also helps to construct the creative identity of a brand.
VISORE is an evolving mecca of artistic innovation. Tell us about your greatest influences in establishing the brand and tell us how you’d wish VISORE would contend to inspire others?
Printed media, from magazines to documentary books, have always had a huge influence on me. And obviously the people behind it. Especially writers and stylists that have tried to challenge the status quo fashion. One of them is Franca Sozzani, the legendary editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia who has set the ground on how inclusive fashion media should be. Launching the “Black issue” of Vogue Italia in 2008 was kind of revolutionary, knowing that Condé Nast’s publications weren’t exactly known for embracing model diversity. I had seen my mother reading the magazine and was incredibly impressed. I was hopeful that inclusive representation of people in the media would be on its way. Sadly, we’ve been having the same conversation for more than 10 years and now must fight harder than ever. If we manage to make our community rethink the systems they work in, what role they want to play in the chain, and encourage them to try no patterns, it would be a hopeful start.