Not all collaborations are created equal. When MIRKA MORA is involved, for instance, well… that’s a winning ticket.
Mirka Mora, is, of course, one of Australia’s best loved artists. I had the great pleasure of interviewing Mirka myself in 2014 – a truly magical experience. Now in her late 80s, Mirka has an energy that is impossible to describe. She is a master storyteller, completely cheeky and hilarious, and permanently excitable! Melbourne is so very lucky to have her.
Mirka still paints everyday. ‘I think the secret is not to grow up too much’ she says. ‘I like to be insecure, I like to be on tenderhooks. You’ve got to tremble’.
We had a brief chat to Lisa Gorman about the genesis of this inspired meeting of minds!
HEY Lisa, tell us a little bit about this collaboration. How did it come about, how long has it been in development for, and what was it like to work with THE Mirka Mora?
The conversation started over a year ago. We went through the process of selecting works, and reworking works into print form. We looked at textures we would explore, fabrications and techniques we’d apply, and who this collection would be created for and why.
Mirka herself is incredible. She’s now in her late 80s and still painting daily. She talks about her work with absolute pleasure, describing the scene, the colours, the elements with such passion.
Mirka is taken by beautiful things. She collects and keeps. Watching her watching the model on set during the shoot was a gorgeous moment. She expresses her thoughts continually about how beautiful fabric, eyes, colours, faces, light, textures appear to her. Mirka is happy, generous, and has a cheeky twinkle in her eye that you can tell is what has powered her through her textured life. I love the woman.
What is it about Mirka Mora’s work that you find most appealing?
The ephemeral naivety of Mirka’s work is what appeals to me. She creates scenes of other-worldliness and places that are not physically ours. Angels with devils horns, serpents, foliage, girls, suns and other little creatures. The works have an ambience and lightness to me that is innocent and calming.
How did you go about selecting the works, and translating Mirka’s distinctive aesthetic into wearable pieces?
The works we’re selected from existing paintings. Mirka has such a wealth of work behind her, which made the selection itself quite tricky. ‘Where to start’ was my first thought.
William, Mirka’s son worked with us to help select works that he and Mirka could see as translating to garments.
We talked about creating four general stories in the collection, one with a light base, one with a deeper richer base and one that used only one or 2 elements of a pairing and one that is embroidered.
We discussed expectations around the finished product, the need to use silk and linens within the range, and the need to hold into the detail and painted texture when printed in fabric. The technical part follows, with the creation of repeat patterns, placement prints, garment design and fabrication, and a sample range is produced.
What can we expect from the range?
You will see a 15 piece apparel collection and a range of accessories. You will also see a gorgeous pic of Mirka in my favourite dress from the collection!
The Mirka Mora X Gorman collection launches online and instore TODAY. Jump on it, people… something tells me this range will not make it to the sale racks!