Clara Pinto, the go-to designer for textiles
For Argentinian designer Clara Pinto, a career in the arts was inevitable. Having grown up with an artist for a mother, she was constantly surrounded by artistic influences. For her bachelor's it was therefore no surprise that she chose to study Fashion and Textiles at ABM, after doing a foundation at the National University of Arts (UNA). What makes her designs so striking is not only their visual appearance, through her intricate manipulation of the material felt, but also the symbolic meaning behind them. Using real bones in her graduate collection, she emphasises the biological nature of humans, and how unique we are all inside, by "bringing our insides outside". Here to speak about her progressive and unique take on design, is an interview with the fashion designer Clara Pinto.
Describe a typical Clara Pinto wearer?
I wear my own work a lot. My clothes are not typical streetwear, but are they are abstract, unclear and dreamy. I would say, my typical wearers consist of people who dress up to have fun with it.
Your collection PAUSE is described as the “anthropological search about the different dimensions in human corporeality”. Tell me what you mean by this.
The study of Anthropology analyses all the different aspects and dimensions of humans (political, economical, biological, etc). So for the PAUSE collection, I decided to focus on both the biological and symbolic dimensions. Biological, such as the natural and automatic processes of the body like breathing and eating, and then the symbolic dimensions of how we convert our body and modify it to relate and identify with. My idea throughout the collection was to bring the biological aspect of the body outside, as that is the most personal thing. So my pieces serve as a metaphor for that, bringing the inside outside.
You use bones in your newest collection. How and why did you do this?
My dad is a doctor so my entire life I've been surrounded by medical books. Most of the patterns in the collection are taken from shapes from human bones. Obviously, the bones I used for the collection were not human bones, but I asked friends and family for the bones of animals that they had eaten. I bleached and cleaned the bones, which took quite long as they were quite dirty and smelly, and incorporated them into my collection.
As your dad was a doctor, how did you get inspired to go into the arts?
My mother is an artist. Since I was little, I have been exposed to the artistic world, however I did not know much about fashion. I went back and forth from art school to fashion school and ended up finding a comfortable canvas in textiles and garments for my work. I can´t really say if I do fashion or art, its both!
You studied Fashion and Textiles in Buenos Aires. How would you say the fashion education in Argentina is different from that in the UK?
It is very different. From how specific training is in London compared to Buenos Aires, to the amount of opportunities and niches you can find London. In Buenos Aires, the fashion industry is a lot smaller and less impactful compared to London. A great shift worldwide in happening in fashion, and interesting, conscious and independent designers are slowly being noticed in Argentina.
What would you say was the biggest difference between fashion and art?
They communicate, being both fields of creations. I take fashion as one of the most significant canvases to work on. Is the fist thing you show, and that explains a lot of its weight in society.
What’s your favorite piece of your collection and why?
I often work with felts, but one of my favorite pieces was this really big coat I made that took an entire day. The coat was so big that I put it in the dryer, which I knew could potentially ruin it. However, it ended up looking fantastic- it was quite rugged and looked like it was straight out of an episode of Game of Thrones!
Who is your favorite fashion designer?
I have many. I really like what Josep Font did with Del Pozo, a Spanish brand that was rebranded recently. The tailoring of the pieces is impeccable, the imagery is delightful, everything is fantastic. I also really like new designers like Molly Goddard, Simone Rocha, Cecile Bahnsen and Masha Reva.