Viviers’ Unfold AW19 // A tender weaving between paradoxes

The Shokunin spirit of Japan will always be a part of me. It means craftsmanship; however, it is much more than that. One of the essential things is to make something for the joy of making it, and to do it carefully, beautifully, and to your utmost best of your ability. Shokunin is an attitude and a social consciousness, which is both spiritual and material.

Lezanne Viviers

Captured in the crevice of a fold, occupying a poetic liminality. Bold yet tender, unapologetic yet self-aware and secure in its softness. VIVIERS in many ways encompasses the impassioned spirit that its creator describes. Founded by Lezanne Viviers, the new concept clothing brand weaves between paradoxes; complicating notions of masculinity and femininity, dabbling in a sophisticated rebellion. Cut to precision and constructed from both rare and unusual textiles, Unfold offers a unique experience to building a wardrobe, the garments produced by the studio are nothing less than bespoke treasures.

Nestled in the dappled light of a tree-lined horizon and the refracted city-scape of a double-volume glass façade, LOTUS HOUSE is dual appointment studio and concept store. Contained within and carefully curated by Viviers, is an enticing collection of wearable pieces, contemporary art and a garden for Japanese tea ceremonies. “The VIVIERS vision lives beyond the natural realm. Although the collections are made in Johannesburg and breathes the spirit of the city, the team has a “new-luxe” approach – creating wearable, handmade clothing that is equally as tactile as it is aesthetically pleasing. VIVIERS is interested in redefining luxury by making clothes that are worn with ease.”

As the former Creative Director of Marianne Fassler, Viviers reflects on the trajectory of her experience. Noting that after eight years of a wonderful immersion in exploring the language of another brand, she now feels that it is the right time to explore her own vision. “Work experience in a nurturing yet demanding environment like a fashion atelier is irreplaceable.” She goes on to describe how, “everything I did before prepared me for this new trajectory…Unfold, my debut AW19 collection is a testament to a process of introspection and self-discovery, perhaps the introduction to an autobiography, which will be the start of transcribing my aesthetic language for the brand.” Through her experience, Viviers is keenly conscious that, “being a creative director means to listen and to observe, but most importantly to be present, to be aware.” She hopes for a transparent fashion community that is united rather than divisive. One that engages in the sharing of knowledge production to build a better industry.

This process has culminated from a long-standing engagement with fashion, “finding rare and unusual vintage garments still makes up a big part of my current wardrobe, as these pieces were made with integrity, made from top quality fabrics, and were hand-finished. Not to mention their impeccable fit.” Designing has offered Viviers a platform to explore creative practice. She likens the process of constructing patterns to sculpture – a medium of making that she has a personal history with. “Making clothes, as with art, starts with generating a silhouette, where after the texture of the materials follows in a variety of colors, all considerately combined to form something new, something that could perhaps be the answer to a question that was still to be asked.” To echo her words for the show, expect the unexpected.

The brand launches on the 11th of April

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