The following article was published in N-SPHERE January 2010 issue.


For those who are not familiar with the Amoelbarroco Atelier, how would you introduce your body of work and phrase it for our readers?

I use to define Amoelbarroco as not–a fashion label exactly. It’s more an exercise of imagination, a kind of arty experiment about philosophy of clothes or the construction of personality through aesthethics. A way of showing ideas and frivolizing (don’t know if this well said) fundamental concepts. These creations are the support of a thinking and reflect an ideal of beauty created from personal preferences and experiences revised and reinterpreted by this crazy head.

Is it demanding working with yourself as a model or does it help you illustrate better your concepts?

During my fine art studies I got the bad habit of being my own support for almost every art exercise I did. I suppose this is a continuation of this behaviour. I like to use other models too, but finding people that I really like to appear in these pics is difficult for me… I like people that show personality in their poses, not standart models and neither standart–model bodies. Maybe that’s the reason that most of the times finally my other models use to be my close friends or myself.

Which of your past projects do you consider to have been most demanding and how does the creative process usually develop in the making of a clothing item?

The first thing that comes to my mind is an initiative called LaCripta (Madrid, 2005–2006), a musical session at a big club. The most demanding part for me was to treat with a big audience constantly, I’m a shy person (although I might not look like that!). Nowadays, this is still the worst part for me, I understand fashion in a not usual way but I’m in the obligation of selling my stuff. In my case, I’m all alone in this label (of course this has its advantages too) and I have to develop almost all the process from the first idea, that most of the times is been altered during the creative and technical part, to the materialization-pattern, cutting- (unless sewing it) or the advertising/selling subjects. I really enjoy all the creative proccess, but I don’t like at all the business matters.

If I am not mistaken, you described yourself at some point as a “dead dandy”. Does this tie in with the concept of gender inversion through clothing and androgyny, especially in a 21st century background?

Hehe, you’re right! I use this concept very often in an ironic way, I’m a woman, so I’m not supposed to be a dandy although I fullfil all the “requirements” for being one. I propose a neodandysm, I’m very interested in the relativization of genres and I’d like to go beyond with this, but I didn’t find still how to do it properly.

The images of the archaic you employ can also be seen as a nostalgia for bygone eras. Do you believe that reworking the past leads to selfawareness or is it more of a degree of aesthetic fetishism which we all have for dead artforms and currents?

I guess it’s a mixture of all that. In my case, I grew up in contact with a lot of antiquities thanks to my grandparents: old medical stuff, fetus preserved in formol, walls covered of damask, clocks with sculptures, oil lamps… and a bunch of art and traveller books (here starts my fixation with Venice or the ancient attire from baroque and rococo paintings, for example). I feel this stuff like something familiar to me and really are fetish objects full of nostalgia and signification.

In the nascent dawn of late capitalism, do you consider yourself a postmodernist who collages different forms and ages or as an artist born several decades or centuries too late?

Absolutely postmodern, we have at our service all art and history to do with them whatever we want! That’s the power of postmodern thought, and the conceptual collage is a rich and versatile way for developing creative works in my opinion.

Do you believe that ecclecticism stands at the ground of art today, disabling the artist to create truly transgressive works?

Sometimes I wonder if it is possible to make something really transgressive today within the prevailing conformity in which we live and most of the times the answer is… yes, we can. We still have rules and a standart/polite behaviour and I guess that not doing the correct sometimes is also a way to express yourself or going against.

Engagement with earlier centuries also traps the artist in a sense, sometimes leading to postmodern anxieties about authenticity. Have you experienced this while creating and displaying your work?

Everything is done already, everything is invented in our time so, maybe, the way of being different or genuine is just the way that one manage and show the work of art. So, I don’t see my work like something “truly” original, I guess my aportations are my elections, my way of re-invention and mixture of the subjects that I choose. Sometimes I feel in a trap, crisis moments… time to think more and more in how to do it my way.

You mentioned that you are interested in secret societies; is your clothing a way of proclaiming your membership in an elite subculture or is it purely a form of celebrating your individuality?

I wish I’d have the chance to design an uniform for some secret society! I have the sensation of belonging to an artists gang (Amanda, Kemê, Laura Wächter, Alejandra…), but this is not a secret neither “oficial”. We feel very close in our thinking, but everyone has their personal caracteristics and this is not directly related with clothing… so maybe I’m not answering this question, hehe.

In your list of hobbies you’ve also made a note on automatons. How would you describe this appeal for human replicas?

I love every object that imitates life, I think it’s fascinating. There is a long tradition about automatons in our history and literature and it’s related also with the strange of our own lifes… human body is also a consecutive repetition of natural process, a machine somehow. The creation of “the other”is a search of responses about ourselves.

Dressing and clothing in general also gives a sense of otherness to humans, as they are being gradually transformed into symbols. Would you argue that the clothes you make might be used as tools for masking and erasing individuality or the reverse?

I won’t lie, I like to make the difference. Even the most standart way of dressing has its philosophy or “not-philosophy”… I just make wider the offer with my proposal of aesthethics. After all, they will choose what they want to look (and to show)!

How were your creations received in Spain and abroad? Do you believe there is an already existent audience in your home country or have you been involved in the creation and establishment of new patterns there?

I found a great reception in general and luckily I usually have regular costumers (on the last times mostly from Spain) also collaborated recently with Shien and Dances of Vice (New York) as sponsor and hope to do more things together in the future. In my country I haven’t seen another similar project before, but don’t know if people perceive Amoelbarroco as a new pattern. I use to think with humility about this.

There seems to be a connection between the music you like and the aesthetics of clothes you make. Does the reverse apply as well? Are persons from these subcultures interested in your body of work and would you consider collaborating with bands from these areas?

Yes, inspiration sometimes comes from music too. I know that people from some bands enjoy my work, but for the moment I didn’t have the chance to collaborate with any band in this sense. I remember that one day the Tiger Lillies left a comment on my myspace saying that I have good taste, that was very flattering for me!

Do you have any collaborations in progress now? From what I’ve seen, Amoelbarroco is branching out and getting involved in more than one project simultaneously, which is a compliment coming from a procrastinator like me.

Haha, I should confess that I’m a procastinator too, but yes, I use to be involved in several projects (even metaprojects) at one time. I always have plans with the people I use to work in photography (Kemê, Alejandra Vacuii, Amanda Daniela) or illustration/design (Laura Wächter), a video creation collaborating with Twins Factory and my own collections and artideas. I should start working now! I love to mix formats and share my creative anxiety with all this people.

Judging by your complex background, Your artistic expression spans on a number of artistic fields. Does clothing design posits itself at the ground of your creative endeavor or is it a temporary phase?

Sometimes I feel that clothing design is a bit narrow for what I want to do really, that’s why I always want to incorporate this in bigger image or conceptual projects. The most important part for me is developing the idea and translate it into the material world as accurate as I imagine it… this is SO hard, even when you don’t have all the means you’d like. I live seeking forms of “translation”. Today, designing garments are the main “channel”, but tomorrow never knows!

What inspires Amoelbarroco now and what projects are on their way?

Now I’m a complicated moment, I want to experiment with new forms and introduce some self-created objects in pictures and videos accompaniying the designs and scenaries, also want to create some eccentric-bombastic hats and accesories, let’s see how it works all together… I’m very excited also about my participation at the Alternative Fashion Week in London-April 2010.

Thank you for taking the time to answer this and the spheres are keeping their eyes on your future releases.

Thanks so much to you for appreciate my work! Hope my English is not too bad!!

questions by Diana Daia

Full article here.