maandag 11 juni 2018

Annaiss Yucra Mancilla

‘Expressing the identity of my country through my garments’, this is how Annaiss Yucra Mancilla,  a Lima based emerging designer, describes her design vision. Dedicated to transmit a colorful conversation through fashion, she aims to bring her Peruvian heritage to confront social barriers through her garments. This theme is highly visible in her new collection, 'WILLKAS', inspired by Peruvian mythology, and the story of the twins Willkas, a boy and a girl, who have to go through the human world and conquer the adversities that come with it. Emerging victorious, they are rewarded by the Gods and transformed into the sun and the moon to bring balance back to earth. Her collection draws a parallel between this myth and modern Peru, seeing the children from low resources as the Willkas who have to go through the adversities of everyday life.

Her collection will be presented at the Show Programme at the SAM-Decorfabriek on Saturday the 16th of June. You can get your tickets to the show here.

What made you realize that you wanted to work in (fashion) design? 

Since I can remember the sound of the sewing machines are part of myself. My family owns a small textile factory in Lima, and the fabrics and trims have been part of my childhood. When I was a kid I used to give them my doodles of “new designs” so they could make them. I think that summarize my choice: its my heritage and legacy.

Why did you choose fashion?

I wanted to have a way to speak through all my thoughts and concerns and views about life and my country. I found the balance when I started designing. I found a way to communicate through fashion.

What would you say are your main achievements in your career? 

I had the incredible luck and opportunity to be able to be part of wonderful platforms in London (graduate fashion week 24th anniversary), Lima (Lima Fashion week)and soon New Zealand( iD Emerging designer awards 2018). But my main achievement in my career are the projects in which I have been collaborating, such as working with male inmates in San Juan de lurigancho jail, or with the indigenous Shipibo ladies in the Jungle of Peru and the Andean community of San Pedro de Cajas and their artisans. It has really made me realize I can change and improve lives, by creating and helping these people develop new incomes for a better life.

What are your sources of inspiration?

My biggest muse is my country. I found so many sorts of inspiration. I have indigenous heritage, so my background was also a big part of how I define myself and my garments. As a third generation of Peruvian immigrant to the capital, I always lived with this huge problem in Peru about racism against their own for their skin or heritage, so growing up I had to deal with this problems and I had to go through a shame of myself and lack of identity, to embracing it and really capturing this beautiful part of myself in my pieces.

Why did you decide to participate in FASHIONCLASH 2018? What are your expectations?

FASHIONCLASH is an upcoming contemporary platform, that embraces emerging designers and gives them the opportunity to share their work with the world. I feel very lucky and grateful to be part of this year's selection. I really want to land to an Asian platform and I believe this event will really help me to grow as a designer and help me achieve my dream.

What do you love most about (fashion) design? What are the biggest struggles faced by young designers?

My favorite part is definitely investigation. Being able to create a story to tell and to find the right sources its what really gives me a thrill. The biggest struggle as a young designer, will have to be the lack of influence and connections in such a rough industry, as well as struggling with money to put forward to create this whole vision.

How would you define fashion?

A beautiful way to communicate all sorts of matters.

What do you think are the most important issues in fashion today? 

The addiction of consumption has created waste-wear culture. From the lack of time to design, to make the product profitable, to stop thinking in the fibers that are used or the waste it's creating. People have forgotten to admire each piece they buy and they just feel the necessity to accumulate at all cost. This process highly impacts the damage fast-fashion causes to the environment, but also the population, that has to work non-stop in a modern slavery.

How do you think fashion contributes to society, can it contribute to a better world? 

It gives the freedom of self-expression. It helps developing individuality and to communicate what we feel in our everyday life. It empowers people to believe they can be whoever they want to if they fit in the right piece.

What challenges do you face in the design process? What are your favorite parts of the process?

I think one of the biggest challenges is trying to create balance between my designs and compromise with an idea. My favorite part will have to be the developing, from making my prints and starting my toiles, until watching an idea starting as something and becoming something completely different, that’s when I realize I am doing the right job.

Describe your design process in one word: Colorful

How would you describe the concept behind your project (for FASHIONCLASH)?

A juxtaposition between myth and reality, tradition and modernity represented in THE WILLKAS (indigenous children) of contemporary Peru, who struggle in their everyday life in order to overcome their fears and embrace their culture.

What inspired you?

My country is my biggest inspiration, I find so many ways and aspects and I get excited knowing I can find new sources for a project. What makes Peru very special is, it's multiculturalism and the fact that it has all sorts of backgrounds and information, which I try to embrace through my design thinking.

How would you describe your project in three words? Protest, Traditions, Cultural embracement

What projects are you involved in at the moment? What are your next steps? 

At the moment I am collaborating with a non-profit organization called PURE ART (Canada). I had the opportunity to go to the jungle with the crew and start working with the shpibo ladies in their sewing initiative making a 3 days creative workshop that helped them combine their traditional techniques with the modern market. I also just finished a collaboration with Peruvian artist Rafael Lanfranco and created 3 outfits to one of his sculptures (LA FELINA) that will be showing from the 19th till 22th of May in MAC-Lima( Museo de Arte Contemporanea). I am currently running my family's small factory, were I have been working for a year now, exporting and developing knitwear products for boutiques and retailers around the world. I will carry on doing this and hopefully start a small production of ANNAISS YUCRA MANCILLA.

What are your thoughts regarding fashion and religion? 

Noun: ‘A particular system of faith and worship’, basically synonymous

What does your day look like during the design process?

I will start with one idea on my head and this particular idea will change completely by the end of the day. I will start trying to add more and more. Finally, I will sketch on my laptop, I enjoy using digital drawings to have a better idea of the final result and combine fabrics. 

Who is your favorite artist? Yayoi Kusama

Who is your favorite designer? Molly Goddard

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