|Photography by Lucas Seidenfaden|
“Hi, and congratulations Patrick! How are you and how's it all going?”
“It's good, it's a good experience”
“What has your journey to get here been like?”
“A good experience yeah, very focused”
“What do you think you will get out of today?”
“Recognition; hopefully people will get to know more about me”
I am of course talking to one of the exhibitors in the graduate showcase, like many of the others Patrick Li almost seems lost for words, still taking in the experience, and as I suspect, revelling in a sense of relief. It takes me a while to pull him away from the mingling admirers to catch a word with the enigma that is Mr Li. I had seen the collection in advance and was dying to meet the man himself to know where it had all originated from.
The designs of Patrick Li are unmissable, standing tall in the centre of the room, the man himself standing boyishly beside the installation obviously overwhelmed at the reception, but the Brighton University BA, Royal College Of Art MA graduate deserves all the praise he is undoubtedly going to get.
“So what was your inspiration for your MA collection?”
"An image of rocks by photographer Edward Burtynsky" he replies (both of us struggling with the spelling), and you can tell.
The striations mimic the layers of soft fabric he hand cut to create the final shapes. It's a contrast of soft and hard, and the outcome is beautiful. A capsule collection of hand created garments in varying shades of grey, carefully draped layers make up the skirts and fall like a waterfall to create an asymmetric effect on the raw edge hems.
“So where do you see yourself in 10 years time?”
“With my own label in London”
Of course we wish him all the best and can't wait to see him on the catwalk.
Text: Madeleine Ayers