Today (unintentionally) appears to be International Update Day. I’m in Scotland, Fat Gold are in Malta and this next brand are based in Singapore! Crazy how that worked out.
The next brand to be featured on FatKidOnFire are very much based in combining art and fashion – collaborating with actual artists rather than purely graphic designers (although I’m sure at some level the two are the same, and I’m not knocking either disciplines!) for the range of tees they release with each collection…
[FatKidOnFire’s been distinctly lacking in female models lately, I’ll try my best to rectify that]
Find out more after the jump
Ardentees (ARDT) are not a brand you’ll forget in a hurry. Combining seriously fresh artistic talent, from all over the world, with a distinctly natural flavour with their latest collection; after I found them I simply could not get their designs out of my head. The designs are art, or at least what I consider to be art anyway! I sat down with Donovan to find out more about the brand…
Who/ what is ARDT? Ardentees is the brainchild of three close friends who witnessed the death of truly inspiring tee designs in the mass market. We collaborate with a league of talented, upcoming designers from the world over to bring to you visually intriguing, experimental and thought-provoking designs on a wearable canvas.
Above everything, we’re hoping to be a platform for aspiring artists to showcase their works and for our designs to inspire creativity.
Your tee designs are strong and striking – most of them use naturally inspired graphics, is this a long running theme? Do you consider those designs to be your main image or is it flexible? For this collection, we had a strong focus on a kind of feral audacity, thus the naturally inspired graphics. But we’re hoping we can always bring something new to the table with each collection so we can never be defined by any particular style, rather, to be defined by what we aim to do. Having said that, we have a preference for striking designs (and striking messages in the designs) so our tees will always be bold and thought-provoking.
What does/ will make your brand stand out and distinguish itself from the rest of the UK streetwear/ fashion pack? I can’t speak for other brands, but we’re looking to distinguish ourselves through what we do and what our tees say. It’s always easy to create aesthetically-appealing tee designs, but we want to go beyond it, to have something said and something brought across. The story behind each design is important, if not more, than the design itself. We want our tees to speak to the individual.
Who or what influences you in your work? Because our tees are designed by a myriad of designers from all over the world, I can safely say, no one particular person or thing influences our brand, or rather, everything influences the brand. And that’s what sets us apart from other brands.
What’s your take on the whole UK streetwear/ fashion scene at the moment? Being from Singapore, I must say that a lot of our local street fashion is inspired by Brit style. UK streetwear scene has never been bolder and more exciting. The labels coming up are fresher and more cutting-edge than the last. We would love to see what comes out of UK and possibly learn from what they have to offer.
Where do you see you and ARDT being in 5 years time? We hope to expand our tee line and product offerings, do collaborations with not only designers but musicians, artists and other creatives. We want ARDT to be able to express more, say more and inspire more.
Where can people expect to catch your work, any stockists to watch? Our tees are currently available exclusively on our website. We’re looking to allow retailers to carry our brand in the near future.
Top 5 favourite albums? Everybody in the company comes from different backgrounds and lifestyles, so we couldn’t agree what to list. We decided to be democratic and not name any. Like everything else in our company, our inspirations come from far, wide-reaching and diverse places.
Shoutouts FatKidOnFire; for taking the time out to hear what we have to say and allowing your readers to hear what we have to say.
Everybody else involved in our apparel production; we couldn’t have done it without you all, simply put.
Personally, my wardrobe consists of clothes that have a significantly lesser artistic feel than any of these ARDT tees. I’d feel a bit, well, wrong to wear some of these designs – I’d be more interested in framing them and putting them on the wall than wearing them on my chest (but that’s probably missing the point and is entirely down to my own weirdness).
The one tee that did catch my eye is this beauty by London-based designer Jack Crossing
How sick is that?! All I need to do now is wait for the next student loan installment to drop by… Only 19 more days to wait!
I really enjoyed talking to Donovan and the rest of the ARDT family, they genuinely care about the collaborations they do and the work that goes into producing the freshest looking pieces of art (I’m so glad I can use that phrase to describe tees)! If you liked what you’ve read and want to wear some of these designs, head over to ARDT’s webstore and support this brand like they support the many international artists they work with