Designer Spotlight: Harikrishnans Inflatable Pants are Catching Everyone by Surprise | Hacker Noon

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Image via Shouts

Newly graduated London College of Fashion student, Harikrishnan is catching everyone by surprise with his balloon pants. The 26-year-old designer completed his undergraduate study in fashion design at the National Institute of Fashion Technology before moving to London for his MA.

Intro to art and design

Hari’s father was an artist himself, primarily doing realism. His father served as his first inspiration and introduction into the art world. Some of his first artworks were replicated anatomical drawings. Hari’s personal journey into life drawing gave him a proficient knowledge of the human body that he applies in his fashion design works.

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Gif via Behance

Fashion Design vs. Sculpture

He has said, “I attempt to blur the boundaries between clothing and high art with disruption at the center of my work.” Many artists debate the line between fashion design and wearable sculpture. One one side of the spectrum is everyday clothes that are mostly concerned with practicality and wearability. Opposing this is a wearable sculpture, that despite its name, is not very wearable at all. These fashion items are primarily concerned with aesthetics and often include elements that deem them unwearable off the runway. Many critics group these into fine art sculpture rather than fashion because they are merely sculptures that concern the body.

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Image via TrendHunter

Finding a different perspective

In his graduating collection, Hari’s models wore inflatable latex pants paired with a structured blazer. Then, inspiration struck one day while walking his dog. He was inspired by the distorted perspective his dog has from such a low angle. “The thought of him seeing me as a giant figure or not seeing my head at all was intriguing, so I decided to reimagine the people around me through the game of distortion — detached from the stereotypical, pre-determined notions of the human perspective.”

Latex was the perfect material for this project, considering its flexibility gave him no limitations. Considering sustainability, latex is among the worst materials for the environment. Its non-recyclable properties give it a linear lifespan. Hari’s solution was to use primarily end-of-roll scraps that would otherwise be thrown away. His limited material would require him to patch together creations that coincidentally also allow him to create the rounded structure that is the most eye-catching element of his designs.

Jean Paul-Goude

Hari has taken inspiration from french photographer Jean Paul-Goude. Throughout his lifetime, Goude has produced many iconic works in the realm of editorial photography. He has photographed almost all the covers for Grace Jones’ discography and was even the man behind Kim Kardashian’s magazine cover that “broke the internet.” Beyond those two, Hari was especially inspired by Goude’s collage technique that distorted his subject. The tedious process required him to cut small slivers of his photography and glue them together before rescanning them. Hari reimagined this technique when patching together latex to achieve the distorted figure.

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Image via HypeBeast

Hari’s Promising Future

Although the designer hasn’t set any definitive path for himself, his successful introduction into the industry has opened many doors. Currently, none of his work is available for purchase but solely visible on the runway and all over the internet, of course.

Hari is constantly experimenting and sharing his new textile creations on his Instagram. He has said he wants his work to excite people, make them speak and think. Mission accomplished, Hari; the entire fashion world is talking about you.

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