MEET THE MAKERS: LEON EMANUEL BLANCK
Home is ... ?
Heidelberg at the moment - but I tend to get used to areas fast. I do not feel dependent on places or cities.
How do you define home?
Well, as a teenager I moved from Heidelberg to Hong Kong. I remember being extremly excited to see something new. We stayed there for a couple of years so Hong Kong was my home at the time. When we moved back to Heidelberg, I remember being really unhappy about it. Funny enough it only took me a few weeks to get aquainted again. That’s when I realized that I do not have a strong relation to being a native or something along the lines. Even though I really enjoy Heidelberg, I could very well move somewhere else. Just my studio is here now which makes it a bit more complicated. So ultimately I define home as a place a feel good about.
What advice would you give someone in order to cheer them up?
Get wasted already.
Fotos or film?
The determing factor is the general framework: like ones attention span, time and mood. Looking at fotos I need way less concentration, time or focus, than when I am watching film. To me, film is more diverse and I feel that film puts me in a certain mood easier - just think of music, cuts etc. Film catches me more and often leaves me exhausted. What I like about fotos more is that they leave more room for imagination and freedom of thought as well as being less draining - depending on what your are looking at obviously.
Painting or sculpture?
Definately sclupture as I am feel they give more opportunity for creation. Even though there are paintings with great three-dimensionality, sculptures have more speciousness - you can look at them from many different angles therefore being able to find interesting new perspectives all the time.
What did you do last for the first time?
Not a very exciting story, but at least an honest one: I just came back from a weekend in Amsterdam.
What really scares you?
To fuck something up due to neglectfulness.
What encourages you?
To construct things that I surely know I will find really rewarding ones they are finished.
Is fear also an incentive?
I am not an anxious person at all - of course everyone worries at times, but I feel anxiety and fear are bad companions running a business and in any event if I am creating.
What’s the first thing you do in the morning the last thing in the evening?
First I am annoyed about having to get up, last I am annoyed about having to go to bed. A burden I have been carrying all my life.
I don’t want to got to bed because I feel I am missing out on something or because I have better things to do than to sleep. I don’t want to get up because my bed is so freaking comfy and there is nothing forcing me. A paradoxon.
Rather small town or big city?
As I said, I am not one who wants to go to bed early. If there is a party to go to I will probably go there - so perhaps at this point a smaller city forces me to a healthier lifestyle and gives less opportunity for distraction.
Do you think fashion is heading torwards unisex?
Honestly I do not really care where it’s heading to. I like physicalness and that is how my clothing and my sculptures look. They are sculpted on a human body, rather tight fitting and usually formed on a person with (to me) attractive proportions - even though this can give a macabre thought of wearing someone else’s body. Although androgynity is something that can look really cool, by large, I do not find it attractive.
It’s your first female collection: thoughts/inspiration?
Indeed it is my first full female collection. prior to starting this, I have done numerous items for my girlfriend and her mother. last year, I employed a young woman that helps me with the collections and patterns. Laura and her had a long talk with me about making a full line. After seeing and understanding that they know what the clothing needs to feel and look like we started to work on it thoroughly. The inspiration is the same as for the Men’s collection: the human body and a dystopian, futuristic aesthetic.
In your female collection there is a backpack that was formed on a pregnant woman: the distortion pregnant lady backpack. Do you associate pregnancy with femininity?
Honestly I had this concept years prior to making the actual women’s collection. At the time I had an idea of making backpack, and since everything is body formed, I formed a first prototype on a friend of mine who happens to have big beer belly. Because naturally if you look at a man with a beer belly sideways, the form looks like a backpack. In the end I did not really like it so much and on my way home I ran into a woman that was pregnant. This was basically the starting point to that bag. So in the end my association with pregnancy and femininity does not matter for the piece. I just saw the form of a pregnant lady and knew I had found the form to my backpack.
Interview Camille Naomi Franke
Photography Axl Jansen