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LCM Interview: Alex Mattsson

Ooh err, the intimacy of the off-schedule show. The first of the weekend was tucked a stone’s throw away from our LCM base in a cosy pop-up shop. Five beaut boys posed and pouted jesting among themselves as they skanked along to the thumping techno tunes.

Truth be told I always feel bare awks at these things: you gingerly wander around the room blatantly staring at (and judging) the clothes and the models while they pose awkwardly giving you ‘WTF am I wearing eyes’. Alex Mattsson shattered my preconceptions at the sight of fashion keenos spilling out of the venue, drinks in hand, boogeying on down to the techno trances of his accompanying soundtrack. I liked him already and I was yet to see his SS13 two cents.

But hello SS13. Having to remind myself the whole time the whole reason we’re here: the things that hang on the boys and not the boys themselves, I noted Mattesson’s commitment to sci-fi continues to stimulate his creative direction. For SS13 Mattesson turns to other-worldly happenings namely UFO sightings and the mystery that surrounds them.

His garmz, in the main, were rendered in a more neutral palette of charcoal and dust greys while sun-bleached pastels slash fluros accented pockets, sleeves and necks. This gave way to a canvas boiler suit, wide shorts and crotches that dropped in all the right places. The print presence came in the form of alien-esque greens and spacey blue gradient checks.

Baseball boys and military men shaped the silhouettes while the detailing came from hours of scouring the internet for UFO footage. Don’t believe me? Hear it straight from the horse’s mouth…

Planet Notion: So here we are at London Collections: Men. How does it feel to be part of the first one?

Alex Mattsson: It feels amazing. Now it’s finally here I think it’s an amazing thing. Red Bull made this happen for me, they have been amazing and I am forever grateful. I am super excited about it.

PN: How important do you think it is for London to have its own menswear showcase?

AM: Super important! I don’t understand why it hasn’t happened earlier. London has so much cool menswear talent and they haven’t catered for it until now. But saying that I’m not part of the LCM schedule – I am actually off-schedule – I’m just sort of piggy-backing on their schedule HAHA.

PN: Haa, that’s fine with us. You’re a welcome addition! Can you tell me a little more about your initial inspiration point?

AM: Basically it’s about UFO encounters and aliens. Ninety five per cent of sightings can be debunked but then there’s five per cent that the experts can’t explain – those few happenings that are really a mystery – that’s what this is about. The Randall Schimonds – UK and American army base – in particular. I have been looking at loads of UFO footage and there’s loads sky backgrounds in these and they’re all different colours – blue, peach, maybe purple and navy – all the colours come from these backgrounds.

The cuts in the collection are more sort of military-influenced and particularly soldiers in the army.

PN: What drew you to these particular themes?

AM: I really like myths. I like going on the internet and finding weird stories that make you think is this real, this can’t be real, is this fake? That sort of energy of it whether it’s real or not – I really like that – this is definitely one of those mysteries. Do UFOs exist? Do they actually happen? I like the mystery of it all. And my work is normally influenced by parallel universes so this collection is a continuation.

PN: Where do you see London Collections going in the future?

AM: Hopefully, it’ll get stronger and stronger but it is already amazing. From what I have seen on the internet it looks like it’s been going down really well and I hope they keep it up and make it better and better every time.

Words – Helen Turnbull
Photos – Laura Lewis

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