When it comes to fashion, London has more than its fair share of emerging talents – some cool, some quirky and some, well, downright crazy. Jacky Tsai definitely falls into the first category. And although no one knows his name - yet - we can guarantee they’ll all be saying it when his first clothing collection is revealed this autumn.
How do we know? Well, we’re basing our assumptions on the fact this Shanghai-born, Saint Martins-schooled illustration artist was the man responsible for Alexander McQueen’s famous floral skull print. Now we’ve got your attention, huh?
Having interned at McQueen and collaborated with London label Irwin and Jordan to create the artwork for their ‘Tigers in Wonderland’ collection shown at London Fashion Week in 2010, Tsai, it seems, has pedigree training. And having worked in both Shanghai and London, the designer cites the fusion of the two contrasting cultures as his source of inspiration. Tsai thinks of his work as having no limits or boundaries, and to constantly evolve, he also likes to experiment with different mediums and new techniques.
“I see myself as a kind of Chinese Andy Warhol or Damien Hirst,” he says. He also admits that his floral skull design for McQueen, and his perpetual fascination with the motifs of life and death, are what led him to expand on his concept of contrasting aesthetics. While he describes his work as both “subtle and beautiful” and “striking and dramatic”, it’s also evident that his pieces have an underlying dark and emotional quality that he’s quickly adopted as his signature.
His latest, and one of the most impressive creations to date, has to be the 1.6 metre skull sculpture which Tsai has adorned with thousands (and thousands) of leather flowers. But there’s more to come from the artist/illustrator, who once said that his aim is to bridge the gap between fashion and art. His next projects will include a wooden sculpture and experiments with Chinese porcelain, too.
For now though, we’re getting uncontrollably excited about his limited edition capsule collection of six silk dresses (that come in full and knee length) and a selection of printed men’s t-shirts for AW12.
“The Jacky Tsai collection is about bringing together different worlds, like my art. I want to break the barrier between art and fashion and create ‘art level’ products for collectors of both,” says the designer.
True to (his multi-disciplined) form, Tsai has also produced a fashion film in collaboration with Rafa Pavon from Watergun TV to launch his new and eagerly awaited label, which we have exclusively right here on Styloko. Watch it now (above) and keep an eye out for the launch. We know you can’t wait.