The next Raf Simons?
Combining notes of contemporary streetwear, utilitarian-chic and DIY subversion: Louis Gabriel Nouchi is the new bad boy of menswear to watch. For spring / summer 2019, the emerging Parisian designer took inspiration from the melancholy found in the work of Yukio Mishima (a Japanese artist and the author of The Golden Pavillion). Check out our interview and exclusive first look at the SS19 campaign, shot by Mia Dabrowski, below.
Hey Louis! Talk us through the design process when creating piece of your menswear?
First step is a sketch, that is usually quite precise. I then move on by drawing the whole look, and I add the accessories. Last phases are the pattern making and fitting. Also, sometimes a specific fabric is the starting point and determines whether I want to develop a pair of trousers or a jacket…
Who and what are your major influences?
Literature. All my collections are based on books. So the starting point is usually an image or vision I have my mind when I’m reading something. Strong inspiration that lead me to choose this job was also seeing people in Paris wearing Yojhi Yamamoto when I was a child.
Would you say your inspired by current social and political forces?
Not specifically however, as a creative person, I tend to absorb the vibe in the air, I’m quite like a “sponge”. As an example, the atmosphere was quite heavy and intense in Paris while I was working on this FW19.20 collection, and I’m sure it must have had an influence on my work and energy.
What were your aspirations for your most recent collection?
The FW19.20 collection is based on the exhibition “River of Fundament” from Matthew Barney. I went to see this exhibition because it was based on Norman Miller’s “Ancient Evening”, which I’m a real fan of!I was completely transported by the interpretation of this book by Matthew Barney!
He made a parallel between the ancient Egyptian concept of reincarnation and the history of the car industry in Detroit. I really liked the fact to transpose this antique time onto the modern and contemporary age, just like the process of mixing bits of a classic and popular wardrobe with prints from 2000 years BC: stars as symbols of the sky, but also references to the old Chrysler’s logo! Likewise, the leopard is a symbol of power, but also a grunge code. I wanted every element to be readable at different levels.
What is the fashion scene like in Paris at this point in time, and how does it differ from the other fashion capitals?
I think nowadays menswear is really dynamic, especially in Paris. We have the opportunity to be based next to the most luxurious and heritage brands, right at the center of the Fashion Industry. This is a great incentive and pushes us to try and be at the same level. There’s also a whole new wave of new, emerging designers and brands now in Paris, we all know each other, at least by sight (it’s quite a small city). This also contributes and gives us all good energy!
In terms of our current social climate, how important is menswear in relation to gender?
There’s a lot of questioning about gender. In my opinion it’s really important that menswear brands open up to it, show appreciation for diversity and for all the many ways a guy can dress up nowadays. This is part of the new energy that has an influence on the current menswear scenario. Sportswear is another part, which can also be considered as gender less.
What are your opinions on gender neutral collections?
I think that everyone is free to do whatever he/she wants. From my point of view, in terms of pattern making, we all have different bodies thus it’s impossible to approach everyone the same way. Noteworthy that we also have a lot of female clients at LGN, even if I’d define my brand as menswear. Even though everything I design aims to dress men, in terms of fabric and proportions, I’m very happy to see how women can wear our pieces, in a complete different way.
What do you think the future holds for the menswear industry?
I think it’s a bright future! Fashion weeks just began to be the must haves, richer and more free.
For more updates on the rising label follow LGN on Instagram @louisgabrielnouchiabriel and check out the AW19 collection, shot by Gabriel Boyer, in our gallery below.
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AW19 editorial credits: PHOTOGRAPHER, GABRIEL BOYER; STYLING, NASSIM DERBHIK; ART DIRECTION, ADRIEN POZNANSKI, MAKEUP : Sarah Wandee Matthijnssens, MODELS, YOLETTE/ETIENNE/KEVIN/ROSS; CASTING, STEPHANE GABOUÉ
13 February 2019