June 15, 2015

An Interview - Larissa Hadjio

After graduating at the renowned Central St Martins University of Arts in London,  Larissa cut her teeth in the London and Paris fashion scenes. She now is blessing San Fransisco with her numerous talents and creative energy.

Her work is all about playfulness and is a pure delight - turning sculptures into wearable objects. 

Larissa's bags and accessories are about quality and elegance without the clichés of giant logos and tabs. She uses a 3D pattern technique combined with soft nappa and exotic leathers.  Her fine collections work on a central theme, and they are released over the course of two seasons per year. Larissa's collections are around Diamond Cuts, Creatures from the Deep Sea and African Masquerades. 

She talks about Bless and Fischli & Weiss as her influences, but she’s defiantly on her own track.

Please describe your favourite tool used in your work. / Is there anything you couldn't craft without in your workspace?

Oh, there are many, I love the skiving machine with which you can fine tune the leather thickness to the millimetre. Or the embossing press, which has such immediate effect on a product looking branded. But my favourite is the very simple  large cutting machines, under which you place a large leather and your cutters and ready is the puzzle of elements that you need to assemble a bag. 

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On average, how long do you think it takes from inception through to finished product?

Months

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How do you know when a piece is finished?
 
When I feel satisfied with it.

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When gazing on a newly completed Larissa Hadjio's products, do you still get the same sense of joy and satisfaction now as you did when you first started?
 
Actually I do, some pieces bring me more joy than others. I recently have been wearing the grey squid from the Deep Sea Collection all the time, it seems to fit every outfit I wear. 
 
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If you had to pick one, what is the single most thoughtful gift you have ever been given?
 
There are a few actually, but all given to me by one person.

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Would you describe your process as starting with simple forms and adding detail, or is more a case of striping away the detail to reveal a more simple form? 
 
It happens either way. and the initial idea gets more and more simplified . Sometimes I have a shape I love that I have t to transform into a functional bag for which I elements get added to the simple structure.

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Have you always loved (leather) craft ? Is there a moment when you realised this is what you wanted to dedicate your life to?
 
I think I have a think for certain materials, I love wood, leather, materials that are can transform. I surprised myself to only work with leather.

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What are your go-to magazines or blogs?
 
At the moment its Vice.com, depending what I want to see, I love HAW LIN for its amazing mood and colours or La MOnda Magazine's blog. 

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Having your Larissa Hadjio's bag or accessories seen on someone who would make you the proudest?
 
Maybe Mia Wasikowska, The most special is when friends fall in love with my bags, its very special to go somewhere and see an army of devoted LH bag wearers out and about. 

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What makes you smile the most?
 
People with a good sense of humor.

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Are you living your dream job ?
 
I AM !

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Who would you most like to collaborate with?
 
I would love to create some designs with a very classic design house like Hermes or Louis Vuitton. Or someone far away from accessories, like artist Fischli and Weiss.

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Do you have a product of your own from which you draw inspiration?
 
Many, books, materials, objects. I bought on a market in Montevideo an glazed ceramic lemon squeezer in shape of a dog, which i love.  Or a 3 meter long harlequin silk belt that once belonged to a kimono, which i found in Tokyo. but sometimes its just a material a or surface or material, a hand smoothener, that inspires a collection.

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Is there an artist you admire who provides motivation to your work?
 
Oh yes. may. A few years back Austrian artists Gelatin build Water temple like installation in the Gagosian Gallery, where you you jump around hot pools, sit in egg shaped saunas, under which they rolled big pots of steaming water and wooden labyrinths to squeeze through.  
This adventure filled me inspiration for weeks. Or of coures one of my Favourites, Fischli and Weiss.

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