14 Oct 2016
In Conversation with Simon Mullan
Following his Naked Bomber Jacket series, Simon Mullan comes together with Swedish shoe label Eytys for a special collaboration. We catch up with the German born artist to talk inspirations, favourite artists and what the future may hold...
How did the collaboration with Eytys come about?
Eytys approached me about the collaboration - both Max and Jonathan (Eytys’ co-founders) have a genuine interest in art, which was a very important factor to me. I like everything about Eytys. They’ve worked with some very interesting characters, like Ali Boulala, who’s an absolute skate legend.
What is art to you?
Everything I can and will do for the rest of my life.
What inspires you?
What sparked your interest in ‘tribes’?
I think the fact that I was never part of one!
How are you finding living and working in London compared to Berlin?
It’s very hard to compare because they are very different cities. Berlin is ever growing, brutal and wonderful, London is also very brutal - but busy.
What's the most indispensable item in your studio?
My sewing machine.
Naked Bomber Jacket Series, 2015.
The Naked Bomber Jacket series used deconstructed MA-1 jackets to signify your allegiance to the gang of Simon Mullan. People were invited to wear these, preferably at art events throughout the world. The jackets could never be fully owned, and if the wearer became dissatisfied with the artist's work, the jacket would be given back.
Sum up your work in three words…
Eclecticism, transmedial & aesthetics.
Do you agree that your work blurs the lines between ‘high’ and ‘low’ culture?
Absolutely, I like to have a bit of both in my shows and often see myself as a connector in-between them. An example is the acid house and techno that was played as the soundtrack to my opening show, where you can see smartly dressed people dancing to that sound.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
The best compliments are the ones from friends, my generation.
The Alpha series takes traditional nylon bomber jackets, usually assosciated with 'tough guy' jobs and provocative subcultures, and reconstructs them into patchworks quilts, thus desolving the garment of its connotations with hard power and traditional masculinity.
What makes you angry?
Stupidity, war and assholes.
Name three artists that have inspired you..
Agnes Martin, Bridget Riley & Roman Signer.
Who’s your favourite living artist?
Me - which I have to say because if I don’t believe in me, no one will.
Where do you see yourself and your work in ten years?
Hopefully healthy and working on shows around the world.
Eytys Mother S. Mullan Shoes
Eytys' classic Mother silhouette updated by Simon Mullan with patched upper made from MA-1 Bomber Jacket fabrics. The sole features Mullan's signature and phone number.
Shop Eytys here & follow Simon on Instagram @simon_mullan