Prabal Gurung on his Nepalese nostalgia

We speak to the designer about his AW14 campaign, which sees Rosie Huntington-Whiteley unleash her inner warrior against a stormy Himalayan backdrop

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Prabal Gurung AW14 campaign
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley (IMG) in Prabal Gurung's AW14 campaign Photography Daniel Jackson

For AW14, Prabal Gurung revisited early memories of growing up in Nepal, inspired by “the snow capped mountains, wild roses, vibrant colours and textures, hymns and chants” of his homeland. On this season’s campaign, Gurung worked with both Dazed photographer Daniel Jackson and creative director Christopher Simmonds, shooting Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in the role of a Himalayan warrior. Together, they sought to capture the mix of "intoxicating beauty and serene spirituality" that surrounded the designer's upbringing. Here, Gurung talks us through his references – from female strength to artist Cecily Brown.

Mysterious Mustang

“The collection was inspired initially by a trip to Nepal I took last year – I was particularly intrigued by the region of Mustang. Aside from the spiritual, mysterious and aesthetically captivating elements of Mustang that I felt spoke to the woman I design for, I've also been focusing on the global aspirations of women. It was important to me to capture this in my collection. Rosie was an obvious choice for the campaign, as not only is she the global, well traveled woman, but her beauty has a strength that we celebrate.”

The Girl Who Has Everything

“I admire Cecily Brown enormously, both on a professional and personal level. Her work occupies that fine line between chaos and spirituality – elements I drew on for this collection. Her colour palettes and artistic expression speak a lot to Mustang - and so resonated with me in a very poignant way as I developed the prints and colours for my collection. Simultaneously, she stands for many of the qualities I look to in a muse. She has a meaningful and impactful occupation, is resolute, assured and eloquent. Both she, and her work display a balance of opposites that I feel resonate with my design – lucidity and structure, drama and softness – all at the same time. Cecily herself is as much of a source of inspiration as her work.”

Rosie of the Rocks 

“I have always said our mantra is ‘femininity with a bite’ – elegant and graceful with a refined strength. The Prabal Gurung woman has a sensuality and complexity to her that Rosie reflects. There is nothing simple or reductive about her, she is as alluring in what she conceals, as in what she reveals. This is what drew us to work with her, and what this campaign fully represents.”

 

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