Yang Li is a designer without borders, working internationally from his London studio in a modernist way. At once fixated with machines and the overwhelming force of emotion, Li is, in his second season, quickly establishing a pure yet loaded design language. It's one where touchstones such as the sweatshirt, M-65 or MA-1 are elevated to their most sublime form, purist clothes that are juxtaposed by the DNA of spirit. All in innovative double face. The greater context of his work? Orchestrating a backlash to the zeitgeist of the individual, as Li is intent on creating a rich dialogue of community. The designer elaborates on his philosophy to Dazed, sharing an exclusive edit of images created with photographer Scott Trindle.
I decided to name all my garments after codes, since codes clearly represent something that you can recognise and attribute. Almost like a uniform they indicate a certain 'tribe like' connotation. It's about a quiet shout
"The inspiration of the collection is defined by its mood: if I had to describe it with a word it would be 'determined'. It's a collection for a driven and confident woman, that can wear a fuxia [fuschia] as if it was black, and vice versa. Cuts are clean and sharp, with a particular attention to detail. A key factor is the immediate impact of irreproachable quality, in both materials and manufacturing. Garments are fabricated in Italy by machines then hand-finished by humans. It's this industrial-artisan approach that is very important to me, working to subvert the conventions of clothing.
I decided to name all my garments after codes, since codes clearly represent something that you can recognise and attribute. Almost like a uniform they indicate a certain 'tribe like' connotation. It's about a "quiet shout". Building and maintaining long term relationships is very important to me, it's about a feeling that you create over time and these shared experiences. With that, trust and initiative thrive and work becomes valuable. I'm only proposing my work and my world: the reaction, seeing the clothes worn, is the beautiful part."
Photography by Scott Trindle.