September 26, 2014

IN THE STUDIO WITH VASA MIHICH: “Ideas have no value, if not made.”

As we transition from Summer to Winter, we are shifting to more primal colors and subtle details. Fashion and art can both walk the same path from time to time, which led us to seeking out an Artist who also had a relation to these principles.

As an alumni from the Design Department at UCLA, the first artist that came to mind was none other than the infamous Vasa Mihich, a professor most notably known for his sense of humor, but who also nurtured and taught incoming design students right as they entered the door as a naive and wide-eyed freshman. Although it had been nearly 4 years since having Vasa’s mentorship, he opened the door to his studio without hesitation for us at Koshka. We got a behind the scenes tour of Vasa’s studio based right here in the heart of LA.

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As Vasa immigrated from Yugoslavia to LA in the 1960′s he started off from humble beginnings as he transitioned into the LA Art scene. When asking Vasa about his practice he bluntly reveals, “success is the problem.” As I tried to decipher this statement, Vasa divulged that he had always tried to distance his creative process from any outside interferences of commercial success or profit. Vasa proudly adorns the title of “Conceptual Artist” and as we walk through his studio basking in the bountiful amounts of painting and sculptures, we begin trying to uncover some of the concepts behind his work.

Vasa quickly states, “I know there is a concept, but I forget.”

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Knowing Vasa, I’m not the least bit phased or surprised. It turns out that Vasa has a current book underway that aims to reconstruct his initial concepts behind some of his most famous works. The books also aims to uncover the systems that much of Vasa’s works encapsulates, hinting that systems are not always purely mechanical.

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As an artist, Vasa not only develops concepts, but develops the very techniques to materialize his visions. The studio houses two very different worlds: a gallery on one side, and on the other an industrialized filled machine-shop where Vasa and his team physically create everything. It’s rare, especially for an artist based in Los Angeles, to create everything in-house at their studio. Vasa has kept this up for the past 50 years, a feat that should not be forgotten.

As we begin looking at his sculptures, we are told that many of the details of these pieces actually started off as mistakes. Vasa does not necessarily even see these pieces of work as sculptures, but rather more as “3-dimensional paintings.” Vasa went on to make miniature multiples of his work when asked to create pieces that could be carried in the Gift shops of many the museums his work was exhibited in. Although Vasa joked about how there was no profit in doing so, he did suggest that it had an even greater purpose than monetary gain, in that it offered international visibility for his work. By keeping his price-point at a reasonable price it allowed his art to be tangible by many of his fans, outside of the arts community.

As I begin to ask another question Vasa interrupts, “A lot of people think I’m somebody, but you’re looking at someone who disagrees!”

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As we come to a close of the tour, we sit down with Vasa and ask him some of the last questions we have on our chest. I ponder why Vasa’s work has always been compared to the interactions of light and color and he quickly discards this claim.

He jokes by stating, “I don’t stress this. If we didn’t have light, we wouldn’t see the colors. Everything would be black! You need the light to see my work.” It seems that much of Vasa’s work carries a variety of systems and concepts that many critics and online sources haven’t yet discovered.

One of Vasa’s core philosophies as an artist holds that “ideas have no value if not made.”

I ask Vasa if he has any projects currently underway as I look at some sketches skewed about his desk. The words finish-fetish slip from his mouth as he states how he is creating some of his ideas from nearly 50′s years ago that he did not have the funds at the time to create. To go back after all this time and finally fabricate these structures show the inner perfectionist that Vasa truly is.

Our visit comes to a close, and although I may not be able to understand his work any better than when we started the tour, his words of wisdom jump in and around my brain, much like the memories I have of him as my professor.

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Check out more of Vasa’s work here:

 http://vasastudio.com

September 25, 2014

Elements that Matter

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Flash back to chemistry class but with a sartorial twist. There are various elements that make up who we are right down to what we wear. This weeks collection is inspired by the different elements that are found within our environment. From earth to sky, scroll on as we breakdown what each piece visually represents to us >>

ClearJacket

Matte  Clear Parka

Molecules are present all around us. When two or more atoms join together, they form molecules yet are so small that they can’t be seen within the naked eye. This piece is a representation of when molecules are bonded together, it creates something as a whole even if we cannot physically see it.

Mirror

Le Specs ‘Neo Noir’ Milky Tort

Light is an energy that travels in waves. The reflection of light is when light bounces off an object. If the surface is smooth and shiny, light will reflect at the same angle as it hit the surface called specular reflection.

BlueDress

Ice Blue Racerback Slip Dress

Blue light has a wavelength of 475 nm (nanometers) which is the smallest wavelength in the color spectrum. Because of this it’s light is able to be scattered in all directions as the Sun passes through the atmosphere, which give us the impression that the sky is blue.

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Lazy Oaf Plant Necklace

All plants need sunlight to grow. Sunlight gives plants an input of energy which gives them their green color called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll absorbs this energy from the sunlight in a process known as photosynthesis. Photosynthesis converts this light energy into a chemical energy of sugar and other organic compounds.

Sky The Fifth Label ‘Safe and Sound’ Top & Skirt

The atmosphere we live in is a mixture of gases that surround the Earth. It’s an important part of what makes Earth liveable. High above the planet, the atmosphere becomes thinner until it gradually reaches outer space.  Yet it is the Troposphere (the lowest layer of the Earth) where all the weather takes place and the clouds are found.

S   H   O   P  

L  I  G   H  T    C   O  M  I   N  G    I  N    T  H  R  O  U  G  H    W  I  N  D  O  W  S ‘  

A   T    K   O   S   H   K   A   !

September 18, 2014

All in the Details: Subtle Shifts

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We appreciate the smallest of details and believe these subtleties are the things that bring your daily ensembles to the next level. Asymmetrical cuts, a slight dip of a hem or a fresh pop of color are all small things that will do heavy lifting with your everyday go-to pieces.

The Fifth Label ‘Safe and Sound’ Shirt Dress

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The slight dip and hemline of the dress is what makes this dress cool and slightly sporty.

We dig the boxy fit and tomboy-ness of it.

UNIF ‘Stevie’ Dress

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What’s sweet about this dress is that not only does it remind us of Stevie Nicks (Fleetwood Mac, anyone?) but the asymmetrical cut and fringe is what gives the piece movement all around.

Teal High Waist Pant

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These teal lightweight trousers have a relaxed silhouette that is cozy and looks as easy-going as it feels.

Tomato Cropped Knit Sweater & Skirt

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What we love most about this knit combo is it’s bright red tomato hue that matches perfectly with neutral colors for fall. Layer separately or go all in for a monochromatic look.

S  H  O  P  ‘ C  L  E  A  N   A  E  S  T  H  E  T  I  C  S  ‘  A  T   K  O  S  H  K  A  !

September 11, 2014

STYLE MUSE: Francoise Hardy

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French musician and model Francoise Hardy epitomized Parisian chic in the Sixties. Her minimal approach in style embraced an effortlessly sweet girl-next-door vibe that matched her shy personality. Yet still, no matter where she was vacationing to or lounging around in, Francoise always kept it simple and never overdone in classic miniskirts, easy babydoll dresses, and slim fitting trousers that paired perfectly with her signature long locks and pouty lips. Continue on and peep our favorite style moments >>

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S  H  O  P  ‘  R  E  S  O  R  T  ‘  A  T  K  O  S  H  K  A  !

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September 10, 2014

IN THE MOOD: THE SPOT

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Soaking up the last decadent rays of summer. Chill out wherever your spot may be.

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S H O P  T H E  T H E M E

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September 5, 2014

STREETSTYLE: GREEN FIELD

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As we ease into the fall season, we’re opting for moodier palettes and dark florals that have blossomed in a much less romantic way. Think dramatic green tones and prints reminiscent of stone and marble textures.

Stroll through our street style picks and get inspired >>

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S  H  O  P  ‘  T  O  P  I  A  R  Y   G  A  R  D  E  N  ‘   A   T   K  O  S  H  K  A  !

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August 29, 2014

STREETSTYLE: DESERT DREAM

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This week we journey on into the wonders of the desert. Think earthy tones & textured details that include tasseled embellishments and shaggy fringe that burst with an edge. There’s no de-nile that you’ll be a walking modern day goddess. Get inspired with this week’s street snaps…>>

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S  H  O  P   D  E  S  E  R  T    V  O  Y  A  G  E  R   A  T    K  O  S  H  K  A  !

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