ANN DEMEULEMEESTER: PORTRAIT OF THE DESIGNER
FROM THE VOLT (SUMMER 2011)
NAME: Ann Demeulemeester.
OCCUPATION: fashion designer.
CURRENT EMPLOYER: independent.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?
“Drawing portraits led me to the study of interaction between personality and clothing.”
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO GET TO THE TOP OF THE TREE?
“The trust that if you do good work that it will find its way… ”
“For me, communication.”
DO YOU EVER WEAR YOUR OWN DESIGNS?
“I only wear my own designs – it’s a luxury to be able to create what you want.”
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
“Questions I pose to myself – if I find an answer I create inspiration.”
CAN YOU MULTITASK?
“I concentrate on one thing at the time. It’s the only way to do it good… I hate stress… ”
ARE YOU ONLY AS GOOD AS YOUR LAST COLLECTION?
“The last collection was only possible because all the collections before were there. Each collection is a step in a chain… in a lifework… ”
DO YOU GET JEALOUS OF OTHER DESIGNERS?
“No, it’s great to see somebody do good work.”
DO YOU GET RECOGNISED ON THE STREET?
DO YOU HAVE/HAVE EVER HAD A STALKER?
“No, but the strangest is a fan that has an altar with my portrait…”
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE WAY MOST PEOPLE DRESS?
“Nothing, it’s a personal choice, which I respect.”
WAS THERE A PARTICULAR POINT WHEN YOU STARTED TO GET AMBITIOUS?
“I was always ambitious in the way that I always tried to give the best of myself.”
HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN ALL ABOUT FASHION?
“Not at all – but once you start in fashion you’re on a rolling train and it’s very difficult to get off… Time is my biggest frustration and the biggest luxury.”
ARE YOU A LEGEND?
“No, I’m real.”
“Let’s ask this after I disappear one day… ”
HAVE YOU EVER LIED IN AN INTERVIEW?
DO YOU HAVE A MENTOR? A MUSE? WHO/WHAT ARE THEY?
“Great individuals – or ancestors – who send me energy through their work. If I see or hear or feel great work of somebody it gives me the energy to try to create something good to – in my field… it makes me wanting to give to… it’s a circle of energy that creates a circle of communication in which related souls find each other… the best reward for my work.”
ARE YOU A BELIEVER IN HEALTHY COMPETITION?
“No, competition is for sports – there is a place for every voice worth listening to. It makes the choice only richer.”
IF YOU COULD BE A SUPERHERO, WHICH ONE WOULD YOU BE AND WHY?
“I don’t want to be a superhero – superheroes are not human… ”
HAVE YOU EVER BANNED ANYONE FROM YOUR SHOW BECAUSE OF A BAD REVIEW? WOULD YOU?
“No…I respect the freedom of expression – I know that I always give the best of what is possible for me on that moment in time… ”
HOW PRETENTIOUS ARE YOU ON A SCALE OF 1-10?
“I’m not pretentious at all, but you do need an ‘ego’ to create a personal strong voice.”
by Natalie Dembinska
Photograph by Willy Vandeperre