The Mur­locs

Black Magazine - - Contents -

THE GAIL SOR­RONDA SHOW AT MERCEDES BENZ AUS­TRALIAN FASH­ION WEEK I N SYD­NEY THIS YEAR WAS ONE OF THE MOST HIGHLY AN­TIC­I­PATED OF THE WEEK, DUE NOT ONLY TO DE­SIGNER GAIL REID'S REP­U­TA­TION AS ONE OF THE MOST I NTRIGU­ING AND AC­COM­PLISHED YOUNG AUS­TRALIAN DE­SIGN TAL­ENTS OF THE LAST DECADE, BUT ALSO THE FACT THAT THE BRAND HAD TAKEN A YEAR OFF FROM SHOW­ING THE YEAR PRIOR. STORY: SARAH M BIRCH­LEY AND PHOTO: THOM KERR

Gail Sor­ronda has grown from an in­ter­est­ing lit­tle Queens­land-based la­bel that was kick started by win­ning the Mercedes Benz StartUp Awards with Gail’s grad­u­ate col­lec­tion, into a fully-fledged, in­ter­na­tion­ally-ac­claimed brand. Stints liv­ing in both London and Paris con­trib­uted to the lo­gis­tics of the business and also helped to build recog­ni­tion for the brand on a more wide­spread scale. The op­por­tu­nity to stock her la­bel in the Dolce & Gab­bana store in Via Della Spiga was an amaz­ing priv­i­lege, and some­thing that Gail cites as one of the high­lights of her ca­reer thus far, along­side ‘ show­ing in front of the Gothic lit Pi­azza Duomo in Italy for Vogue Italia Who’s On Next’. Now nine years since its in­cep­tion, and the brand has a suc­cess­ful flag­ship bou­tique and cult-like fol­low­ing. Black Mag­a­zine caught up with Gail Reid fol­low­ing her Fash­ion Week show to dis­cuss her new col­lec­tion, ‘ Mer­maids Ex­ist: As Above/so Be­low’.

Your show this year at MBFWA was one of the talk­ing points of the week and an ab­so­lutely spec­tac­u­lar ex­pe­ri­ence. Could you talk us through the process of col­lab­o­ra­tion with both Dis­ney and the Queens­land Bal­let, in the lead up to the show? I wanted to cre­ate a win­dow of im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence. A sea of lu­mi­nous dreams, in­hab­ited by mer­maids and ruled by su­per­nat­u­ral events. Ap­proach­ing QLD bal­let as a medium was about open­ing the scope of the senses, feel­ings and ex­pe­ri­ences; in­tro­duc­ing the viewer to a mag­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ence. MER­MAIDS re­ally do EX­IST in this space and time. Dis­ney are known for their power of story-telling. Some are ob­vi­ous, some are hid­den, but still they are there. It is one huge nar­ra­tive, and like all nar­ra­tives, it con­tains lessons, ex­am­ples, re­minders and warn­ings. Dis­ney his­tor­i­cally has the abil­ity to trans­port you some­where else and ‘sus­pend dis­be­lief’. I took an essence of the mer­maid ex­pe­ri­ence, not a lit­eral rep­re­sen­ta­tion, and ex­pressed Ariel’s jour­ney through the char­ac­ters she met and through the move­ment of dance with the QLD Bal­let. What are some of the key fea­tures (de­sign tech­niques, tex­tiles etc) of the col­lec­tion? There are a few that I love, the viscose net­ting that looks like a fish­er­men’s net; a mer­maid caught in his net. The fish scale mer­maid se­quin skirt and up­side down em­broi­dered Oc­to­pus are also a fea­ture. The care­free Ariel prints and Se­bas­tian ‘Freak­ing out’ are sym­bolic fea­tures. The Ra­di­o­lar­ian il­lus­tra­tions gave shape to life. I’ve al­ways ad­mired the spirit of com­mu­nity which Gail Sor­ronda is so ac­tively a part of within the fash­ion de­sign realms of Aus­tralia and beyond. Can you tell us about the brands that con­trib­uted the ac­ces­sories and shoes for your show? How did you be­come con­nected with them? I met Syd­ney based Lyn & Tony a few years ago when we were in the same press agency and I no­ticed their ac­ces­sories. We have re­mained friends and col­lab­o­ra­tors since. They had pre­vi­ously worked on our ‘Stem the Flow’ Col­lec­tion and we are also stock­ists of their la­bel in our store. Bris­bane based Christina Water­son is an Artist/de­signer that I first per­son­ally met in our store as a cus­tomer. She gave me 5 ‘Tracelets’ of a se­ries of 777 to ever be made which can only be given per­son­ally by her and not bought. There are peo­ple all around the world with them that she traces. I love what she has de­vel­oped from her art prac­tice. It’s gen­uine, dis­ci­plined and poetic. Mon­treal based Ariel De Pinto is a de­signer who I met in Berlin and again in Paris. She is known for her del­i­cate wo­ven chain jew­ellery which is stocked in my favourite stores Dover St Mar­ket and Open­ing Cer­e­mony. We too have started sell­ing her ac­ces­sories but par­tic­u­larly her shoes. The up­pers are beau­ti­fully hand­made onto a su­per comfy orthopaedic sole. It was only fit­ting that Ariel from the Lit­tle Mer­maid would be wear­ing Ariel De Pinto shoes to pro­tect her new found feet! Who are the top four artists/de­sign­ers/brands/per­son­al­i­ties that would be your dream col­lab­o­ra­tions? Philip Glass, Carine Roit­feld, Tim Bur­ton and Luigi Seraphini. What comes next for Gail Sor­ronda? More travel, more ex­pe­ri­ence and I have a cou­ple of projects com­ing up with Dis­ney which is ex­cit­ing! www.gail­sor­ronda.com.au

Beauty: Becca Gil­martin Hair: Iggy us­ing Kevin. Murphy. Gail wears: Gail Sor­ronda Sea Witch jacket and Mer­maid Scales skirt from Mer­maids Ex­ist SS 14/15 col­lec­tion

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