Fashion today is more than just fabric, which protects the body. Today it is more a media and transboundary phenomenon, which expresses the feeling of life of a human being or an art movement which explores specific concepts and looking for new solutions for the body. The fashion and the objects of the Dutch fashion designer Marieka Ratsma are equally conceptual and transboundary. Marieka studied communication and media in The Hague and fashion communication at the Utrecht School of Arts. Her graduate collection is called DAS AXIOM DER FAIRNESS. The fabulous collection is inspired by nature and science and shows Mariekas passion for concepts and object making.For the collection Marieka dealt with scientific theses of the German physicist Claus Mattheck and creates together with architect Kostika Spaho the Biomimicry shoe. Inspired by the ease and stability of bird bones the shoe applies the principles of nature to fashion. The entire collection as well as a fascinating interview in which Marieka reveals more about herself and her collection can be found after the jump.
Who are you and what interests you / your work?
Hi, I am Marieka Ratsma. I am a fashion designer from Woerden, The Netherlands. I have an interest in shaping visions for the future with my designs.
My latest collection is my graduation collection called "Das Axiom der Fairness". The items that I have made for this project all tell a story about fair sharing of burdens and the deviding of strengths, inspired by nature. With this collection I hope to share a vision of collaboration and new way of approaching design.
How do you start a collection. What ìs your inspiration?
I do not have a specific area that I focus on for my inspiration. I look at what is going on at the moment. I do that by collecting images and materials and keeping track of the news. Then I try to find a connection between all the stuff that I have collected to form a concept where I can work from.
How import are the following terms in your work: form, colour and composition?I think it is really important to have the right balance in these three. I have to say I really love colour when used in the right way it can make my day. I am also really intrigued by how many colours of black for example there are if you look at a Pantone book, amazing!
How important is the craftsmanship in your work?
I have great respect for craftsmanship. By working on a garment or product with so much attention it gives it something extra. However I do not see myself as a craftsman. I think my strength lies with my ideas. I love to explore new materials and techniques, such as 3D printing. I think the future will be a combination of craftsmanship and new techniques.
Where do you work?
I work from own little place in Woerden which in the center of the Netherlands.
Where and how you were trained, and how has the training influenced you and your work? I started out studying Communication and media in The Hague. After I finished that study I worked for a couple of years and then started at the HKU in Utrecht. I have learned alot at both studies. I know how branding and marketing works but I have also learned not to let your ideas be influenced by what you think the result will be.
What does it mean to you to you being a designer?
Hard work haha. I think I finally found what I am good at, and that's the best feeling.
Design for the individual or for the mass?
Individual. When I design, the mass doesn't exist.
How has knowing to appreciate art and design affect the way you live?
Well my mind is always full, thinking about new stuff and ongoing projects. So it has definitely influenced my life in terms that it never stops. Also, once you have finished a project you cannot lie back for a while, you have to come up with something just as good or better.
If you are not doing fashion what will you be doing?
Probably photography. It is something which is closely connected to fashion. I love to do it.
What is your goal for the future?
Taking on collaborations with other discplines and making my label succesful.
© Marieka Ratsma
Interview: Stephanie Passul
Photography:Thomas van Schaik