The artica-arbox founder on her creative vision, human connection and the brand’s new collaboration with Selfridges.
Championing authenticity as the true definition of luxury, artica-arbox makes clothes designed to evoke confidence and individuality.
Reinterpreting classic pieces and silhouettes with modern tech fabrics and innovative design, the brand’s SS20 collection – which includes their first dedicated menswear range – is inspired by the hyper-modern, technological environment that’s evolving all around us. Influenced by sci-fi cinema and space-age aesthetics, the collection plays with perceptions of what the future might feel like for fashion, art and identity.
In line with their collaboration with Selfridges as part of their new Christmas campaign – for which they have designed a special collection of clothing and two in-store pop-ups launching next week in their London flagship store – we spoke with founder, owner and creative director Irene Roth about her vision for the brand, why human connection is paramount to its ethos and what we can expect from their partnership with the store.
Hi Irene! When did you start designing and why did you decide to pursue it as a career?
Creative expression has always been part of my identity and wellbeing. I was always fascinated from a young age by how people are personified by fashion and their place in the world, so I decided to create my own brand.
What inspired you to launch your own brand?
I realised that were weren’t too many brands that spoke to me – in a sense of blending high-low, sophistication, a youthful aesthetic, and construction with ease. It was my way of telling my story.
How would you describe the aesthetic and ethos of the brand?
The ethos and aesthetic of the brand is always about creating harmony between two ends of the spectrum. Sexy-subtle, strong-soft, masculine-feminine.
It’s been described as a label grounded in human connection and emotion – is this something that’s important to you?
It is absolutely important and paramount to the brand.
How does that translate into your designing?
My team and I always begin the exploration of the collection with a scenario of human emotion. We recreate imagery of human connection, that brings on certain emotion that we can all relate to and have a dialogue about.
You’ve got the first dedicated menswear collection debut this season – why did you want to expand into menswear?
Wearing menswear has always been part of my personal aesthetic. It was a full vision of telling the story.
How does it relate to your vision for womenswear?
When working with and creating the collection, it’s natural for me to style the menswear and womenswear interchangeably.
How did your collaboration with Selfridges come about and what does it entail?
Thankfully Selfridges have supported our collection since the beginning. It felt like a natural progression and luckily, being such an iconic retailer, it’s the perfect place to have an exclusive menswear and womenswear collection side by side.
What can we expect from the pop-ups?
We did some exclusive pieces for the pop-up that are more logo and silhouette driven. You can expect to discover a small forest in the middle of Selfridges…
Why were you drawn to doing this particular partnership?
Selfridges is one of the most iconic department stores in the world that has a global audience. They have been supportive from the beginning and to be supported by Selfridges, for a new brand, is incredible.
Why did you want to explore the new technological environments we’re living in through clothing?
It was a question, again, of human connection – asking, ‘Are we more connected and authentic through technology and social media, or are we less connected?’ We bounced around the idea of if we produced and staged a situation or shot for social media. ‘Is it still authentic? Is it still “real”?’
How do you want people to feel when they wear the pieces?
I want people to feel confident, and like they are an accurate representation of how they feel on the inside.
What’s next for you and the brand?
To continue to have a dialogue with our community, and explore other categories of fashion on how we can better tell our story and connect.