Subtlety In Spades
LOVA introduces today’s gents to casual sophistication.
by JOSE R. MEJIA
Daniel Murphy, Nikolas Apostolopoulos and Giuseppe Valentini of LOVA
Considering the relative dearth of information on LOVA [besides the recent profile in the times], we all want to know: Who are you? What are you doing? And why?
LOVA is Daniel Murphy, Nikolas Apostolopoulos and Giuseppe Valentini, a collective of friends, colleagues and family. LOVA is our shared intent to create menswear that is as meticulously designed and constructed, as it is accessible. Being our fist collection, it was self evident that the Spring/Summer would begin the process of defining LOVA so in designing we carefully considered the development of this identity. The collection we chose does not reflect the complete concept of LOVA however it certainly expresses some key themes that we wanted to establish. From a broader perspective the collection can be seen as a celebration of post-war America, a much-mythologized era of possibility and optimism. This was a time when men dressed smartly but completely understated. We wanted to capture that casual sophistication and deliver it in a contemporary context. This aesthetic was the basis of the short film we created and posted on our website.
The line has a really focused sense of simplicity to it, in my eyes. Would you say this is fitting? What inspires the LOVA aesthetic?
We follow a design aesthetic that avoids the unnecessary. The most beautiful things in life are often the most simple. Refinement isn’t about overstatement, it’s more about the subtle nuances: gravity, sincerity and simplicity. LOVA is our life, however, clothing is not the only element to the label. LOVA is also about the people in our lives. We have a group of intelligent and creative friends that have helped nurture the brand. Without them we never would have had launched with the same effect.
Our inspiration comes from these people and is drawn from the full range of cultural output, both current and past. Books, films and music obviously weigh heavily upon our designs. However this is balanced with functionality. It is important to us that our clothing is appropriate to our lifestyle and is not so conceptual or form-focused as to alienate the wearer.
The label used to be based in Australia, correct? What prompted the move, and why did you choose Los Angeles?
The label really didn’t come to life until 2006 in Los Angeles. Nikolas and I were based in Melbourne and decided to move to Los Angeles in 2004 as we noticed an emergence of art, music and fashion coming out of the west coast. We had not long completed our studies and started working in our respective industries before we chose adventure over a mortgage and thus made the move.
You shot the video presentation for your collection using Roman Polanski's 8mm camera according to some reports. How'd this opportunity present itself, and what was it like working with a tool that someone as masterful as Polanski had used?
John Pina (one half of NEON www.itsneon.com) decided to use this camera for the short film because we felt it would capture the warmth and sincerity we were after. The "home movie" effect was also achieved through the use of old film that had been sitting in a storage container for 15 years. Some of the film was water damaged so we lost some great footage but were able to salvage enough to piece together the film. Being our first season we wanted the film to portray some of the ideals of LOVA, enjoying the sun, food and wine with family and friends. It was not his (Roman Polanski's) camera rather the same model of camera he has used in several of his films.
With the initial splash having gone well, what can we all expect from you in the future? Fo you have a clear idea of where you want to steer lova from here on out?
LOVA will continue to explore the points of intersection between people and cultures. We are intrigued by appropriation and reinterpretation and are excited about our integration into the European market. We also have other creative projects in which we wish to engage LOVA. Otherwise, we are enjoying the challenges faced, lessons learnt and this great opportunity.
Visit LOVA online at http://www.lovadesign.com/