Tomorrow sees the annual art fair, Frieze London open its doors to buyers and admirers alike for four days of contemporary art in Regent’s Park.
Similarly to London Fashion Week, it began as an industry event before arriving at its current status as a byword for the new and the now. From Thursday, curators, artists, collectors, gallerists and critics will be joined by culture seeking members of the general public, simply hoping for a glance of something fresh.
One such attendee will be the menswear designer, Raimund Berthold. Born in Austria, Berthold studied at Central Saint Martins then moved to New York to work for a number of leading fashion brands, before returning to the UK and in 2009, setting up his own name label.
His pieces are studied but simple, with details that shy away from any fuss. Alongside his label he is a keen contemporary art collector, with a strong interest in the work of Jessie Flood-Paddock, an artist whose own work shares similar aesthetic values.
In celebration of the fair’s arrival, the designer will curate an exhibition of Flood-Paddock’s work at OTHER/shop, the Soho boutique who first stocked Berthold.
Earlier this week Clash caught up with Raimund to talk Frieze, collections and riding a bike without a crash helmet.
Whose work are you most looking forward to seeing at Frieze?
I’m excited about seeing Thilo Heinzmann, Phyllida Barlow, Sarah Lucas, Jessie Flood-Paddock (of course!) Matias Faldbakken, Rosemarie Trockel, Klara Lidén, Rebecca Warren and Wolfgang Tillmans. But, hopefully there will be some new discoveries.
What is it about Jessie’s work that draws you in?
Jessie’s art is witty, thought provoking, intelligent, beautiful and relevant. On top of all that, she’s a very kind, inspiring and fun person to be around.
What’s your favourite gallery in London?
I really like the South London Gallery and Chisenhale Gallery. They are both charitable organisations with great programs that support young artists. Their projects are always ambitious, adventurous and really do make a difference to the community and the artists themselves.
Why did you choose fashion over art?
I chose fashion because I am not an artist. Fashion is fast moving and changes quickly; it’s a fascinating business. Art is my guilty pleasure. I say guilty because it can be all consuming at times, but I find it very stimulating and inspiring. It helps my work.
Which contemporary designers do you admire?
I like the work of Raf Simons, Ann Demeulemeester, and I like Marni too.
As a menswear designer, how have you found London Collections: Men?
It’s great to have a platform in your own city through which to show menswear to international buyers and press. It’s growing every season and it’s becoming an important tool to raise London based designers profiles. It’s not easy of course, but then nothing ever is.
Jessie’s 2011 piece, Snacks 10, takes its title from David Foster Wallace’s thoughts on sweets. What’s your vice?
My vice is probably drinking too much caffeine (and vodka on the rocks). Also I should probably stop cycling without a helmet.
What music do you listen to while working?
I like listening to the radio because I like to hear new bands and songs that maybe I do not know. I also change station several times during the day and go from BBC 6 MUSIC to ORF FM4 – a great Austrian station – XFM and sometimes RADIO 1 too. If I am listening to my iTunes then it’ll be Planning to Rock, Azealia Banks or PJ Harvey.
The exhibition launches in-store tomorrow and will showcase pieces from previous works.
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