Everyone is familiar with John Malkovich the actor and director, but less so with Malkovich the designer and, this year, President of the 9th edition of the PV Awards. Yet he founded his fashion brand six years ago, and ever since then has been presenting a men’s collection that reflects his own image: refined and witty.
Where does your passion for clothing come from?
John Malkovich: I always really liked fashion, but I began to get more interested in it at university. Costume design was part of my theatre curriculum. We learned to draw, to create a pattern, to sew. The costume designers I met were also a decisive factor. I worked with the greatest: James Acheson on Dangerous Liaisons and The Sheltering Sky; and Caroline de Vivaise, who designed costumes for Patrice Chéreau. All of them showed me how essential garments are. They can reveal the personality of the wearer. The rest was really just a matter of chance. An Italian company suggested I do some work for them in 2001, and I launched my own brand, in 2012.
You also have a passion for textiles. Which fabrics are you most proud of?
That’s all very much related to my interest in costumes. I bought a lot of fabrics in a gallery in Tangier, which, unfortunately, doesn’t exist anymore. I own home-woven North African fabrics, Chinese silks, a lot of antique linen. I also bought a lot from Sarti, Ricceri and other Italian weavers.
You’ve been a longtime and loyal visitor to Première Vision. When did you first discover the show?
About fifteen years ago, and I haven’t missed an edition since. The show is fundamental to my creative process, because all my collections start with the fabric. I don’t follow trends. What interests me are fabrics I can transform into clothing pieces that are nice to wear. And since I’m ecologically minded, I select natural fabrics that are meant to last a long time.
How would you define your work as a designer?
Actually I don’t feel like I’m making fashion. I think of the garment as a design object that is going to be worn. And I feel quite removed from the fashion world’s usual circuits. I don’t seek any approval from specialised publications. I just hope people want my clothes, and that they find them agreeable and comfortable to wear.
What are your current projects in the fashion field?
I just designed three capsule collections with about ten pieces each, which will be sold on my website, johnmalkovich.com, and in some concept stores around the world, in Amsterdam, New York, Miami, etc.
At heart, what does fashion really bring you?
Clothing design has turned into a true form of expression for me, like the theatre or cinema.
>The PV Awards jury will announce the winners next 19 September at 5:30 pm in The Forum, Hall 6. A special ceremony followed this year by a new DJ set performed by French electropop duo SYNAPSON! Save the date !