The Academy of Art University student designers’ presentation at the spring 2013 Mercedes-Benz Fashion previews was extremely impressive. “Part of our commitment to the designers is to help launch their careers and have their collections seen by professionals,” said Elisa Stephens, president of AAU. “Debuting their collections during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center is an incredible opportunity.”
For spring 2013, there were eight women’s wear collections, two of which are collaborations between fashion and textile design students, and one collaborative collection sponsored by UbiFrance, the French trade commission. This show was also broadcast live at www.academyart.educationshow for the seventh season.
These designers created very wearable clothes with impeccable tailoring and distinctive details. Stephina Touch was raised in Bakersfield, Calif., but looked to traditional Asian architecture when designing her collection. Iglika Vasilva Matthews is originally from Bulgaria, where she earned a BFA in textile design from Verna Free University. She came to AAU to earn her MFA in fashion design. When designing this season’s collection, she drew inspiration from buildings designed by architect Zaha Hadid. Hadid’s structures often create an illusion of movement in static objects, something Matthews sought to replicate in her collection.
Jisun Lee hails from Seoul, South Korea. She earned a BFA in English language and literature from Chung Aug University. Her men’s suits were inspired by the 1920s. She reinterpreted the silhouettes for women’s wear, maintaining an oversized look. She also experimented with collar and lapel structures.
Yantel Fan was born and raised in Shijianhuang, in the Hebei Province of China. When creating her spring ’13 collection, Fan was influenced by the windows in modern buildings. In her line, there were repetitive patterns, angular shapes and the transparency of glass. Jie Jessie Liu was born and raised in Penglai, China. She was inspired by the artist Anish Kapoor, known for his geometric, streamlined sculptures and installations. Her interpretation of his influences shows in her garments with sharp lines and angular silhouettes.
Tanja Milutinovic of Belgrade, Serbia, collaborated with Jie Jessie Liu while creating pretty prints. Ginie C.Y. Huang was born and raised in Taiwan. Her spring collection was inspired by the work of Ninagawa Mika, one of Japan’s most popular photographers. Huang’s designs were completely immersed in the colors.