[January 15 2014] : Magazine
art & fashion / Vienna
interview by ANNABEL FERNANDES
photos by SOPHIE THUN
Quantum physicist David Deutsch describes the “fabric of reality” as a composition of parallel realities. Anna-Sophie Berger’s parallel realities include being a multimedia artist, fashion designer, and photographer. Like many of her contemporaries, her work has been described as a “mediated nomadism.” While still a student at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, she began engaging in art and fashion using Internet images. Her graduate collection “Fashion Is Fast” dealt with fashion, garments, body relationships, and website sociology.
ANNABEL FERNANDES — In addition to your fashion studies, you’ve studied Transmedia Art in Vienna. Has this had an impact on your practice?
ANNA-SOPHIE BERGER — I studied with Brigitte Kowanz, whose Transmedia Art class was like a think tank. Brigitte was the first authority from the fine arts to encourage me and to help me understand that my work was both art and fashion and that I didn’t have to repackage it for commerce or make it readable for people in fine art. In the class I developed a performance called Modeanweisung [fashion instructions]. It was staged with ordinary people in ordinary clothes. Later I combined it with fashion. For my diploma I merged performance and garments into one coherent piece.
ANNABEL FERNANDES — How did you become an artist?
ANNA-SOPHIE BERGER — A year before graduating, I had my first show at JTT Gallery in New York City. It was a show organized by Zak Kitnick, a New York-based artist who’d found my work online — which is curious enough, but happening more and more. We started communicating, and finally he asked me to be part of the show in New York. It was very important because it encouraged me, even for my diploma, to go all out with my conceptual ideas. Then came my diploma. From that experience I learned that it wasn’t so important whether I was an artist or a designer; more important was the approach as a transmedia practice. If I design a shoe, it’s a conceptual process. One can argue whether it’s fashion or art, but that doesn’t make much difference. It’s more about where it will be presented and, of course, the price.
ANNABEL FERNANDES — At the JTT Gallery exhibition, you showed the same thing in three different forms: photographically, as an...