David Koma’s tribute to the body
Creative director of Mugler since 2013, David Koma shows his collection under his name in London since 2009. His sophisticated creations celebrates woman body with sculptural and bodyconscious dresses.
You have been inspired by dance and the ballet dancer since your beginnings (I interviewed you for Numéro in 2011 actually !). Where does this fascination with ballet come from ?
David Koma: I grew up in St Petersburg and the Mariinsky Theatre was around the corner, so as a child I used to see different performances throughout the years and had the chance to meet a few incredible dancers which sparked my interest and love of this beautiful form of art.
We have seen a lot of typical transparent ballet skirts on the SS2016 runways, but your collection alludes to the figure of the dancer in a different way. Transparencies are subtle, and often mixed with leather…
I love the softness and feminine qualities of ballet however I wanted to view it from a slightly tougher and stronger perspective. Combining such delicate layers of pastel tulles with black leather panels seemed to create a more interesting balance and one that is more relevant to the David Koma girl.
The bodyconscious element is essential to your work, both at your own label and at Mugler. Why is it so important to you?
One of the main inspirations for me is the natural beauty of the body so I always like to work around the figure to celebrate the beautiful shape of the female form. The fact that I studied anatomy helps me to experiment with design lines but means I never cross the line in terms of balance and proportion.
You enhance the waist, in this particular collection, in a variety of ways : soft corset, curved lines, wrapped tulle, long belt… is it a very sensual part of the female body in your eye ?
Yes, definitely-I’m always drawn to the silhouette of the hour glass figure and in this season we tried to exaggerate it in many different ways.
Your figures merge two garments into one in a very subtle way, where does this idea come from ?
I really like the idea of combining interesting fabrics and textures together within a garment and we collage different items together into one piece on my fitting model and come up with something interesting.
Although your collection is sophisticated, there is a sense of ease throughout, almost sportswear-like… What do you like about that ?
Athleticism plays a big role in my research. Whilst always doing something very sculptural or body-conscious, I find looking at sportswear brings a different dynamic to my designs and I love incorporating high-tech fabrics to create something more modern.
Interview by Delphine Roche.