INTERVIEW with Katarina Matijevic, Serbian fashion designer in Paris

Hey hey again!

I’m back with a new blog post and with something I have never done before! An interview!!! I have always loved reading interviews, or even being the one interviewed (although I was interviewing myself in my head, but oh well haha).

I am so so so happy and grateful to present you Katarina! Katarina comes from Serbia and she is a Paris based womenswear designer. Her brand goes by the name Tvvin. As she says, Tvvin stands for duality within design and an individual, whose focus is the intention to bring ease and comfort to the wearer.

I N T E R V I E W

Q: Describe yourself in one sentence

A: Balance of constancy and change

Q: What inspired you to do fashion design?

A: The feeling that you can give to and get from - a piece of garment.
Also, my dad.
He used to buy a lot of interior design and decor magazines that we would flip through together, day and night. At first, I developed a huge passion for architecture and interior design. Then it kind of moved on to fashion, my dad was always into it. He was the only person I loved going shopping with.
Also, my parents were the owners of the first sportswear shop in our hometown.
I listened to a lot of stories (I wasn’t born at that time) about how they did it and why. My dad was always talking to me about colours, fabrics and the relationship they had with customers, but also the relationship customers had with the products. It’s completely different point of view on fashion if you are in sales and if you go to a fashion / art school. I happen to get the best of both worlds!

Q: What would you like to achieve with your work?

A: To give comfort and security of a home onto a wearer - through the garment

Q: Where do you find inspiration?

A: Psichology, poetry, fine arts, sculpture and furniture design.
Observing all of these together, they represent a certain atmosphere and emotion to which I react during the process of working on a collection.
First rule is to observe, the second rule is to act on it.
In between - it’s like a play of the passive and active side of my personality, with a lot of empathy included.

Q: Tell me something about your last collection?

A: FW19 Collection named „The Act of Absence“ is inspired by a feeling of absence being more striking than presence. It actually came from a situation I found myself to be in, shortly after my arrival to Paris. I always felt like something or someone was missing even if I achieved everything I wanted by that point and was very happy to open a new chapter in my life and work on a new collection.

I guess we’ve all felt like that at one point of our lives, no matter what or who was missing. And it’s only human to feel this way, to be in this internal state of mind, to not feel enough by being yourself. It’s a very common trigger for depression and anxiety within people of my age that should be spoken about.
The goal of the collection was to react on this feeling of discomfort and make it „leap“ into something positive. Transforming it into a collection that will show vunerability of the wearer as a streingth and not as a negative trait.

photofraphy: Jana Anđić / model: Sara Bošković / Paris 2019

photofraphy: Jana Anđić / model: Sara Bošković / Paris 2019

Q: Which designers you find as the most inspirational?

A: Alber, Alber, Alber! Alber Elbaz!

He is such an inspiration on so many levels for me.
Mostly because of his point of view on life, fashion and society, that is enrichened with his unique sense of humour. He is a designer with a strong intellectual point of view in fashion and applies it on his designs with such ease and beauty – which for me represents the true essence of fashion.

I have a feeling that’s maybe the one thing that scares me the most, I always feel that ‘ugly is the new beautiful.’ I’m not into that, I feel that beautiful is beautiful… maybe ugly is a reflection of the times, so I’m not surprised there is so much ugliness.

Alber Elbaz, Interview at Parsons School of Design, 2016

I have this feeling too, Alber.

Q: Which brand would you like to work for?

A: By previously mentioning Alber, I think it’s quite obvious it would be Lanvin.
I think the brand has entered a new era, quite unstable at the beginning – but I feel the puzzle is finally coming together with each collection. And it’s quite my cup of tea of the aesthetics and creative universe that Bruno Sialelli is serving us.
Besides Lanvin, I wish to work for Jil Sander, Loewe, The Row, Ann Demeulemeester, Lemaire, and Proenza Schouler. The list goes on, but I will stop here.

Q: What advice would you give to your younger self?

A: - Work, but don’t forget to play.
- It’s not the collection of your life, nor the last one you will make. - Please don’t overanalyse, just go after your instincts.

photography: Nemanja Taneski / models: Maja Ristić & Ivana Aničić / Belgrade 2018

photography: Nemanja Taneski / models: Maja Ristić & Ivana Aničić / Belgrade 2018

Q: Where do you see women in design world in the future?

A: I feel that there is no great disbalance in fashion when it comes to gender equality. We live in times when there is a place for everyone.
Forgive me if I am mistaken, but I will blame it on my dreamy and naïve bubble that I sometimes still live in.

Q: What is the meaning of life?

A: To improve is to change, to perfect is to change often” - Winston Churchill
I believe in change. And to be the best version of yourself in a given time is the goal. If you can do that, you will for sure leave behind a legacy that will surpass you as a human being made out of physical components.
It’s really not about the material world, it’s about the spirit that continues to live. It might sound kind of paradoxical speaking as someone who is designing products, but for me fashion is more than just things. It’s the message that’s being sent through it.

Kind of like poetry.

Speaking of poetry... LOVE!

With this we are finishing this interview and I will highly recommend to visit Katarina’s pages to see more of her work:

https://tvvvin.tumblr.com

https://www.notjustalabel.com/tvvvin?

https://www.instagram.com/tvvvin/

Have a lovely evening everybody and see you soon!

Love, Ena

DESIGN{H}ERS

Hello again! On today’s menu we have another book! Now that I have more time to read I have a lot of recommendations to give!

And the book I’m gonna write about is DESIGN{H}ERS. I see it as a guide for an amazing group of women who work in the design field. My lovely friend borrowed me this book and I couldn’t stop reading it, and flipping through, so the book was done in one day and I am now going to get my own copy for sure!


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When it comes to feminism and women power, even though it started in the late 1700s, it is still a very hot topic. I have started educating myself on the history of feminism recently for a personal project that I will start working on soon. I find it a bit shocking that we still have to even talk about this and that issues still exist. Seeing more work that brings together powerful women brings me a lot of joy. And this book is for sure an amazing example!


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In my opinion there are unfortunately ways that are maybe not the right way to go to prove a point. I will not mention any of these since my goal here is to inspire people and not to offend someone. These kind of projects, that show and talk about what these women have done is, for me, one of the best ways to show that we are all equal, no matter what. Projects like these help educate other people and make them see the amazing work that exists! 

Some of my favourite studios or designers from this book are: 

HEY STUDIO https://www.instagram.com/heystudio/

LOTTA NIEMINEN https://www.instagram.com/lottanieminen/

OLIMPIA ZAGNOLI https://www.instagram.com/olimpiazagnoli/

SHYAMA https://www.instagram.com/shyamagolden/

ROANNE ADAMS https://www.instagram.com/roanneadams/

BLOK DESIGN https://www.instagram.com/blokdesign/

Thank you and see you soon!

Ena :)


Designing Your Life

Welcome back to another post! On today’s menu you can find something we are all going through but rarely talk about it - the future. Designing Your Life is a book that should be a required read in schools, in my opinion!


Everybody goes through the feeling of being lost at some point in life, and very often that happens more than once, and that is completely normal. First of all, we change as we get older. Think about the person you were 5 years ago? Would this person make the same choices as the person you are today? Probably not. I certainly wouldn’t. Being on a crossroad of your life, right after you have finished your university or later on when you have already worked for a decade and then you realize the job you have is not what you actually want to do, happens all the time! I can’t really speak from the point of view of the person working for a decade on a wrong position, but I can say that I have changed my university and right now I’m in the position of thinking about which way I should go after I have just got the degree I really wanted. 


As I keep meeting people from all around the world, I know that schooling system is not the same everywhere, so I will explain a bit how it works back at home. Right after you finish high-school, at the age 18,19 you go into university. I started school one year earlier, so I have just turned 18 when I finished high-school. I never really thought what I want to do in my life, but I knew I like design, I like art, and since there are not so many cool options in Belgrade, I decided to go into Architecture university. I spent one year, the last year of high-school, preparing for the entrance exam, having classes every weekend for several hours. Now when I think about it, I should’ve known that was the wrong way, but you never really think of these things when you are 18 and have no clue what you’re good at and what is something that makes you feel fulfilled. Also, back at home is not so common that people make a break between high-school and university, it is somehow expected that you know everything about your future. I got in, I started, and at the beginning I did like it, but I only liked some of the courses, and I am very known for studying only for the subjects I like.. After a while I realized I actually only like art courses and the courses where we build models, and I really did not like any kind of engineering courses, and those ones are very important, if not the most important. To fast forward it a bit, I realized that I really enjoy taking photographs and creating something with using my camera. Also, I really loved making people happy after seeing the results of the photos I took of them. I decided to quit architecture and to try to figure out the next step of my life. Studying photography, as I did in Berlin, is not really possible back at home, also this thought of “photography is just a hobby” was all around me. After doing a short course in photography and graphic design, and volunteering as a photographer numerous times for many different purposes I made a decision to find where can I pursue my new dream. It wasn’t all so easy, but I made it! And now few years later I do have this degree that I wanted so much and it makes me feel really proud of myself! One additional thought, I am not quite sure if it is the best way to let 18y old kids decide about their future, also if you find yourself in a university that after 2 years you realize it’s not the right one, change it! Forget what everybody around you say and do it, it is your life after all!


So now that I am holding this degree in my hands I am again in a position of thinking about the future. There are so many possibilities and ways I could go but which one is the “right” one or the one that will make me happy, and is there just one or I can do more different ones? This is where the book I will present to you today really helped!

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The book is called Designing Your Life - Build the Perfect Career, Step by Step. The authors, Bill Burnett and Dave Evans, divided the book in many chapters and each one of them is the next step, so the book is sort of leading you through the process of designing the life for you. What I really enjoyed is that almost every chapter ends with an exercise that you should do to help you find your path. Even though the process requires a lot of thinking (which is very good for your brain!) the book is pretty easy to read and understand. When you have to design something, or think of the concept, you always start with brainstorming and mind maps, so the authors of the books suggest that you do the same when you design your own life. Asking for help and talking to people that do what you might be interested in is one of the ways of getting more information on the job and seeing if that is something you would enjoy doing or not, and this kind of interaction also brings you contacts and helps you build a network of people that you would work or collaborate with in the future. Before you start building your network, try coming up with massive amount of ideas, as mind maps should be about quantity and not quality. Empty your brain, put on a paper everything that comes to your mind, and then slowly curate multiple possibilities. Wild ideas are very welcome in this situation! 

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Go visit https://designingyour.life and I really recommend getting and reading the book as well! You can get your copy online and I bought mine in Dussmann bookstore (http://www.kulturkaufhaus.de)!

Have a nice designing!
Ena




Berlin Art Week 2019

Welcome to today’s topic: BERLIN ART WEEK!

It’s a quite chilly day in Berlin and I am drinking my oat milk latte, so Berlin haha. It’s been a few days since the Berlin Art Week has officially closed its doors for this year. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t visit most of the exhibitions that took part.

September is as I like to call it an Art Month, even though a lot of events still happen even throughout October. But let’s talk about the Art Week!

Every year for about 5 days there is a week that has so many exhibition openings that you can only try to see them all. Usually I would pick a few and slowly visit them, but this year I really tried to see as many as possible, and then I ended up having as I called an “art overload”. Just kidding, that is almost impossible, but the amount of art pieces I have seen during these few days was really admiring I have to say. Galleries and museums all over the city are opening their doors for art enthusiasts. There were several openings each day and we’d have to stop time in order to see them all! Apart from galleries and museums, there were numerous installations all around Berlin. With years I have to say I began to appreciate installations more and more, and especially those that are done as some sort of an urban intervention that everyone can see while walking around, going to work, commuting or just stepping out of their house. 

In this post I will show some of my favourite exhibitions and art pieces! 


One of my favourite exhibition spaces is for sure KINDL Zentrum für Zeitgenössische Kunst. The space itself leaves you speechless, but the choice of artists that exhibit there never leaves you indifferent. 

Am Sudhaus 3, 12053 Berlin

Am Sudhaus 3, 12053 Berlin


Next on the list is most definitely Hamburger Bahnhof. An old station that is now an amazing museum offers different exhibitions at the same time. The art that is shown is mostly contemporary and from time to time there are also live performances included. Since the location of the museum is in Mitte, very central, and not more than 3 minutes walking distance from the central train station Hauptbahnhof, this museum for sure is a must to whoever visits Berlin!

Invalidenstraße 50-51, 10557 Berlin

Invalidenstraße 50-51, 10557 Berlin


After being in an art-architecture world for a while now, Bauhaus has a special place in my heart! This year, 2019, is actually a 100y since the movement has been founded! During the year there have been several exhibitions that showed pieces from this movement, regarding art, design, architecture, even photography (even though lots of photographers don’t even know that Bauhaus plays a big role in our world as well, not just in architecture and design!) Berlinische Galerie (Alte Jakobstraße 124-128, 10969 Berlin) as one of the main and biggest galleries in the city has exhibited pieces from this movement. For the first time I have seen that people are actually standing in a line and waiting for something cultural and not clubs, iPhones and stuff like that. 

When speaking of Bauhaus, it’s inevitable to mention Gropius Bau Museum. Martin Gropius who is a founder of the museum was a grandson of Walter Gropius, one of the founders of Bauhaus movement. Gropius Bau Museum is one of my favourite buildings in Berlin and the feeling I get every time I go there is just pure bliss! As museum is pretty big, and it has lots of space, often there are at least 3 different exhibitions, and that was the case this time as well!

Niederkirchnerstraße 7, 10963 Berlin

Niederkirchnerstraße 7, 10963 Berlin

After mentioning big guys, I have to talk about my absolute favourite gallery, that has always left me speechless and full of some certain of very special indescribable feeling: Museum Frieder Burda Berlin which is located in the “art street” Auguststraße. One of the photographic projects that I found as the most powerful that I have seen in a long time is being exhibited there. Photographer Olaf Heine and Rwanda Daughters is for sure an experience everybody has to go through if they are in Berlin while its on display! (If you are reading this and you are in Berlin please go and see it!) 

Auguststraße 11 - 13, 10117 Berlin

Auguststraße 11 - 13, 10117 Berlin

And last but not least, Art Fair that was held on the Tempelhofer Feld and inside the abandoned airport. Hangars 5 and 6 hosted numerous galleries and you could see art buyers, gallerists and enthusiasts walking around, having meetings one after the other. I am currently not running a gallery but I for sure enjoyed this fair so much. It was such an inspirational experience!

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Since this post has became so long, I am just going to list some other galleries and museums I find very interesting to visit: Me Collectors Room, Akademie der Künste, C/O (will talk about this one more in a specially dedicated post), König Galerie, Auguststraße (street full of galleries!)

Thank you for reading this and I promise there is a lot of very interesting content including interviews with stimulating people coming!

Have a lovely day!
Ena :) 







Welcome

Welcome everyone! 

For those who know me, this might not be a big surprise since they know how much I love talking and giving my opinion on lots of topics! :) For those who don’t know me, my name is Ena (actually Jelena is my real name, but I prefer using my nickname) and I am a Berlin based photographer and an art enthusiast. I originally come from Belgrade, Serbia (go on the map and find it since I’m pretty sure most of you have no clue what I’m talking about haha). I have recently graduated in Photography but before starting to study photography, I spent 2 years in the Architecture university, which even though I love architecture wasn’t something I felt like doing for the rest of my life. Since early childhood I have shown my artistic interest and beside painting and drawing I do remember these early cameras that in my family I was always the one to use. Acting was yet another activity that I enjoyed and practiced for a while. 


I came to an idea to open a blog as part of my webpage long time ago but I was never “ready” to actually start writing, as often in life, we postpone those “crazy” ideas because we fear nothing will ever come out of it. But, you know what, I don’t mind even if it doesn’t, I have decided to put all of these thoughts “on paper” and share them with you. I am going to be thrilled even if one person reads this, probably my mom haha. 


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So now that you have got a bit of an idea of who I am, here is what this blog is going to be about. As I mentioned earlier, I am an art enthusiast, and visiting art galleries, museums, fairs or public installations is one of my favourite ways of spending free time. On the other hand, as I get older, I enjoy reading much more than I used to in school. When the time came that I can completely pick  books fully on my own and not be forced to read anything I am not interested in, I suddenly realized I actually love reading. Moving to Berlin brought new ways of thinking as well, healthy lifestyle is something I really think of more and more each day, which is probably really weird that moving to this particular city changed that hmmm, maybe is just the age haha. So to wrap it up, I will write on different exhibitions, projects, galleries, museums, books, traveling maybe.. 

I hope this becomes a place where people like me could go and easily find recommendations on the previously mentioned topics. :)

Enjoy!