The Brvtalist is proud to present the latest campaign by one of our absolute favorite brands, Obscur. Swedish designer Richard Söderberg has become a master of embracing dark, atmospheric moods and infusing this spirit into fashion forward clothing, accessories and objects. From brvtal footwear, to striking coats to even motorcycles, Obscur has advanced well beyond just clothing. When we saw photos of the latest collection, entitled "Sustain", at the brand's presentation in Paris, we knew we had to get the collection on site. Soon after, we spoke with Söderberg and he shared images from their latest photo shoot. We also discussed his creative process, brand and inspiration. Please find the images and Q&A below:
*click images to enlarge
The Brvtalist: What is the mission of Obscur and how did the brand come about?
Richard Söderberg: Its a progression and regression of the self (myself).
TB: What are some of your influences at the moment?
RS: I feel like the longer you work within a certain field, the more complex and complicated things get. You start analyzing yourself more, your work, your ambitions, your perception, your environment - it can be very intrusive to your creative process. You also start analyzing your inspirations, what they are, and why they are. What I find more interesting than inspiration itself is actually what opens your eyes to the inspiration, and to your creativity. In my case it's about reaching a kind of primal state to remove the filters in my mind, and to narrow my span of attention. To reach this state there are a number of ways but I truly love to get lost in music, preferably with some drinks, putting me into an almost dreamlike state where there is only me and the world I want to create. Another incredibly meditating experience is riding a motorcycle, which is also hugely influential in my work.
TB: Talk about the latest collection, Sustain. What is the concept behind it and how does it build on previous material?
RS: Slightly contradicting, the latest collection was pretty much built on the filters I'm talking about in the previous question. With many different challenging silhouettes and details that I've been working on in the past, I came to the conclusion that no matter which angle I'm looking at, being original and ground-breaking within wearable garments is extremely difficult today - if not impossible. So how do you move on from having explored the extremes of the clothing spectrum, finding that there is not much more to explore psychologically? For me, the answer was to re-boot and to conform to conservative shapes that makes the garment more discrete and subtle. To give the garment room to breathe, to let other elements come into play such as the context of the garment, the material, the face and soul of the wearer. Let the human wear the garment, instead of letting the garment wear the human, which I see far too often in fashion.
TB: I love that the brand has extended into objects, such as the Yamaha motorcycle. Talk a little bit about how that came about how is it an extension of the label?
RS: Believe it or not, I have developed an extremely conservative way of looking at clothing. Thereby, the creative expression through clothing becomes very narrow - and this is where I start looking for other ways of expressing myself.
Ever since I was little I have always been fascinated by metal, weight, severe shapes and everything that was reminiscent of danger or things that you were supposed to stay away from as a child. Also, when constructing things that are heavy or large, you immediately get the satisfaction that something is changing and progressing. The more you work on it, the larger it becomes, the heavier it becomes, and the greater the impact becomes, visually. Take that metal, apply a variety of industrial tools to create something special that ends up breathing exploding gasoline. I simply had to do it.
TB: What's next for Obscur?
RS: Only time will tell!
The Brvtalist would like to thank Richard Söderberg and Obscur for these incredible images and great discussion. We always admire artists who are continually evolving and not confined by traditional formats, mediums and parameters of the industry in which they operate. Obscur is much more than a clothing brand, but a vehicle of self expression that knows no bounds. We look forward to seeing more work from this amazing creative mind. For more information and online boutique please visit Obscur.
Photos - Cristina Cipriani
Styling - Andrei Yakovlev Mich
Model - Valentin Tszin