designer interview

Loewe’s Jonathan Anderson Is Expanding In The Middle East In A Big Way

Loewe’s Jonathan Anderson Is Expanding In The Middle East In A Big Way

Anderson continues to divide his time between his namesake label and Loewe. When asked about his first visit to the factory of the Spanish brand, he is not shy to show his excitement. “It just made me fall in love,” he says. “I liked that Loewe was not so popular at that moment; it was like a hidden gem that just needed to be cleaned up. When you get there, there’s nothing more exciting than to see people make something in front of you. You have to feel astonished when you witness the craftsman taking a sheet of black leather and transforming it into a three-dimensional object. I think that the ultimate luxury is craft and a human being able to make something. I just thought, this company has been going since 1846 and it has all this knowledge, so imagine if we put more energy in, what the outcome could be…”
Photography: The Bardos

It was exactly this transfusion of freshness, quirkiness, and capacity to produce “wow” moments on the runway while being faithful to craftsmanship that has become the signature style of Anderson during his tenure at Loewe. For his most recent winter collection, currently in stores, Anderson has designed showstopping pieces that cause fashion directors around the world to marvel, as well as a new clientele now encouraged by his fresh aesthetics. “I think that in the beginning, our very historical customers were confused with what I was doing, and it took a little bit of time for us to reassure them. After we changed the logo and restructured the factory, once people saw the end product, the opinions started to change quite quickly,” he comments.
Photography: The Bardos

“This season was all about exploring volume and the idea of clothing as jewelry. There’s lots of beading with a dégradé effect. Some of the looks are styled with sneakers. I like grounding something like a frock coat with utilitarian accessories. We have also designed a leather bag based on Japanese basketry. My favorite looks are the ones where we have collaborated with Takuro Kuwata, as I collect his work. The pieces he has made for Loewe look like leather but in fact they are porcelain.”
The New Loewe Store in The Dubai Mall

The good news for the Middle East clientele is that Loewe has just revamped one boutique and opened another one at The Dubai Mall, with an extended offering for men and women. It is planning to further expand its presence in the region with a new store in Kuwait.
Photography: The Bardos

But these are much more than regular flagships, as the retail floor appears like a mix of a place where you can naturally buy clothes and some home accessories, but also enjoy a beautiful space curated with one-of-a-kind art that reflects this idea that Loewe is a full lifestyle.
Photography: The Bardos

“I think that today, consumers shop differently because we want more from brands. There has to be authenticity. And for me, the store is the most personal thing,” justifies the designer. “I want to find things that you don’t see in other stores. I want to see a beautiful painting with a shoe and a bag. It’s a fun exercise to compile all these pieces and it is something I work pretty hard on. Just choosing the ceramics for the store is a big process, and I wouldn’t pick anything I would not have in my own home.”
Photography: The Bardos

On the topic of authenticity, it is quite remarkable to witness how an Irish designer has the capacity to successfully reshape the most Spanish of Spanish brands, without falling into bullfighting or flamenco dancer clichés. For Anderson, who just spent his last holiday in the country, this is a reflection of a healthy use of the rich archive of Loewe, without allowing it to fully dictate his design, and the discovery at his own pace of the Iberian country.
Photography: The Bardos

“I grew up a lot in Ibiza, and I began to know more about the country when we started to shoot the look books in different parts of Spain,” explains the artistic director, who now collects 18th century Spanish ceramics. “For me, it’s an evolution, to take it bit by bit, and being slowly inspired without forcing anything in my creative process.” For a brand that is so keen on made-by-hand, it is fair to say that Loewe couldn’t be in better ones.
Photography Assistant: Loc Boyle

PHP Code Snippets Powered By : XYZScripts.com