Brandon Wen about fashion and American Malaise collection

Brandon is now pursuing advanced studies at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. His collection which is called American Malaise was absolutely shining on We’re Next.

What sparked your interest in fashion?

I have been interested in fashion since I was at middle school. To be perfectly honest, I saw an episode of project runway and I was like WOW. So we bought a sewing machine and things just sort of took off from there. I really enjoyed it and it came quite naturally so it eventually became my obsession.

What fashion means to you?

That’s a difficult question considering the way fashion is perceived right now. For me, it really is this sort of very personal and expressive art. I hope I can create something that people can enjoy beyond something that is simply worn. Fashion is about the ideas and pieces that we collect and love and identify with. For me fashion is about an appreciation of beauty and a declaration of self . That is much more than a garment or a good business.

How would you describe your brand (creation)?

I would describe my creations as an extension of myself. For anyone who knows me personally, it is very easy to understand my work. My creations are about extending myself to the most creative and most beautiful point possible and realizing that in design.

Brandon Wen

What was the biggest inspiration behind your latest collection American Malaise? And I read the shoes were made by René van den Berg. Would you tell us more about this collaboration? Why did you choose René?

The essential inspiration for American Malaise was this idea of a ‘space cowboy’. I really wanted a collection about cowboys and the Wild West in a super glam Americana type setting blended with a cartoon outer space fantasy, like in so many cartoons that I watch. It was the place I love (America) and the TV I crave (space anime). Like all my work it was about the basic things that make up who I am. I had this idea for these cowboy-moon boots, and was looking desperately for someone creative enough to take on the challenge of making them and a friend of mine from school recommended René to me. It was such an amazing experience. He is such a master at what he does and it was such a pleasure to work with someone like that. There was a lot to learn from the process. So I was really happy that he was able to create this fantasy of mine.

Brandon Wen

About your collection. Is it just school project or way of progression of your brand?

Of course the collection was created as the project of the second year at Antwerp but as I was extremely fortunate to show the collection in Prague as well as Antwerp. It truly is a way to get people interested and publicize myself to see how far I can take this collection.

Foto:, photographer Oxiea Villamonte