His inspiration comes from the urban surroundings in which he lives. His objective is to make a bond between communication and fashion. Camilo Alvarez lives, breathes and designs in Medellin Colombia. For him, being a designer in a city where fashion is still developing is never a disadvantage, but a characteristic and a positive condition.
His career as a designer truly begun after his graduation project walked down the runway at Colombia Moda, a fashion week that takes place in Medellin and always has a good space for new talent. It was a good coincidence that in that Edition personalities from the fashion World like Pepe Reblet, Bernadet Witmann , Jean Luc DuPont and Catherine Villota where sitting at the front row and got fascinated by Camilo´s designs.
After this show Camilo was offered a place at LAF a show for Latin Fashion in the SIMM (Madrid international Fashion) which finally took place in Medellín for various reasons.
In the first Edition of LAF in Medellin Camilo presented “ The City through a Magnifying glass” in which he took as referents some architectural projects that where being done at that time in the city. The attendants amusement wasn’t a surprise for those who knew Camilo´s work. In his next Collection “Aquarium City” he proposed a theory about how in the city’s buildings you can feel water, creating a metaphor where walking through the city becomes like swimming.
With this same Collection Camilo Alvarez is invited to participate at “Raiz Diseño” in Chile, and had participation in Kuwait at FA Gallery where his designs are sold with neighbors in the room such as Rick Owens. But that’s not the end, Camilo with 2 other partners designs, produces an commercializes the brand “Circular” a much more down to Earth and commercial line which reaches a larger audience.
What do you expect for the brand Camilo Alvarez?
To create a clean and urban brand with some sportswear direction. but focused in premium denim, getting to be a designer signature not a luxury brand.
What materials do you use?
In general very gentle materials such as cotton, nylon, polyester and some mixtures of linen with cotton. The experimentation is most of all in the pattern design.
Medellín still doesn’t have a very open market for such avant-garde proposals, does it?
For now the product is focused in a foreign and global consumer, although Medellín is not very open we do make some pieces by command, Circular is more commercial and is having a good response.
Who is Camilo Alvarez?
Someone who communicates through fashion, who looks for reflection through the connection between people and the urbe that surrounds them.
Do you listen to certain music when you design?
Yes, always, for example for “Aquarium City” I’d listen to the pixies, Nirvana and 90´s grunge all the time.
Who buys your clothes?
Since the product is experimental in some ways the user should be someone in constant exploration. People related to music and art. Someone not too feminine nor too masculine because the tone is a little ambiguous without being androgynous
And the “Circular” consumer?
It has the same characteristics as far as which he is urban and moves, but it must also have certain reflective humor.
Which Designers do you admire?
Johji Yamamoto for Y3, Rei Kawakubo for how she handles the company like a creative lab which supports creation (I would like to get there), also the ambiguity of Calvin Klein of the 90´s and Martin Margiela as in the brand’s Communication. Other designers from the Belgian school as well.
If you were not designer what would you be?
I would have done something with cinema, in fact I am going to do it, later I would like to make some music videos, I admire Michel Gondry´s aesthetics.
Many thanks to Laura for this interview – check out her blog fashionlessons!