Ideas that resonate in the mind, ephemera, and abstract notions inform J.W.Anderson’s collections season after season; trends are eschewed for sculptural explorations and the subtle conversations between textures, fabrics, and the odd, engaging detail that consistently form coherent bodies of work. “The minute your brand can be predicted, you’ve got a problem”, Anderson told The Guardian last year, a sentiment that has come to define his collections; predictable in their unpredictability. Occasionally house codes seem to appear: DIY embellishments in ropes, zips and safety pins; high-necks and ruffles – and then they’re gone, to be replaced with something new that has caught Anderson’s eye.
For Autumn/Winter 2016, this was interiors. Silhouettes took on an architectural feel, shapes a familiar, homely one, as though in another context they would have a different purpose. The curve of metal details are the curve of a lamp; stitch work mirrors the grain of wood; draped, floral tapestry that wouldn’t be out of place in the family home.
The textures of one look resonated with the textures of another, the way you may place an item in a room in juxtaposition with another, creating stories and drawing the eye with thoughtful, considered placement. Linear iterations and undulating folds rippled throughout, colour clashes were rhythmically repeated: there was method in the madness.
In lieu of a statement of intent, was simply a quote by interior designer David Hicks – “The excitement of today is the freedom of the individual to make his own choice and the vast range of possibilities from which he may choose.”
To try and make sense of Anderson’s collections is to clutch at the intangible, butterfly answers which settle too briefly on the mind; perhaps to explain his influences and intent would not be to understand his collections better, but to simplify them, and it’s perhaps this absence of buzz-words and superficial depth that Anderson has become the unquestionable talent that he is.