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Meet the VIA Design Graduate of 2018: Ugné Tusaité

We caught up with Lithuanian design student Ugné Tusaité from VIA Design who presented her collections during Copenhagen Fashion Week. We hand selected some of the best collections and heard more from each designer.

Read the full interview below. 

 

Where are you from?

I am a proud Lithuanian.

Age?

22

What is the collection about?

 

My menswear collection, called “Discovered Generation” is a personal exploration of masculinity and its relevance in today’s society. As being one of the twins and growing up with a brother, much to my parent’s effort to treat us completely equal, on the outside world I have noticed a huge difference in peoples expectations and comparisons due to our gender since a very young age.
I could easily see the pressure for boys to be strong and impersonal( and the opposite for girls) so gender roles and its side effects triggered my interest. After research about toxic masculinity and its epidemic all around our society, it was clear to see that the pressure of becoming the man and living up to the expectation is overpowering the becoming of your true self. The identity is often being pushed to the background to take a spectators seat, and the pressure to fulfill and fit in societies “normal” takes the show. The idea of being powerful and intimidating is often confused with violence and aggression rather than education and character, that men so often strive for because of the societies pressure. 
The collection explores all the aspects of masculinity through combining and exaggerating three most recognized male features which are being strong, smart and rebellious to make a rather humorist expression of menswear street fashion. It is all about making a point of gender irrelevance, its all about your identity and its expression, there is no point of being intimidating or violent to seem masculine, it does not work like that. ‘Discovered Generation’ involves formal menswear elements combined with sportswear, laser cut materials and unconventional techniques of manipulating fabric with plastic zip-ties and transforming silhouettes.

 

What was your initial starting process?

I started my process by creating a persona who I wanted to design for, made a story about his life, what he liked to do, what music did he listen to, what bothered him, what was important to him…  and then went on to doing collages to create his universe which helped to set up the mood for the rest of the collection followed up with loads of research. I feel like this is the most important part of the process, so the collection has a strong story and foundation to be built on…

How did it feel to showcase on runway?

It was an amazing experience. Its really rewarding to share my work and see people appreciate it, instead of putting the clothes away in the closet… The rush backstage and my collection on the runway with all the lights- just that made all the hard work pay off immediately. It was also really special to do it together with my classmates, who worked just as hard and became family through this last stretch of education. Loved every minute of it!

What do you want viewers to take away from your collection?

I hope that collection attracts peoples attention and triggers their interest in the issues, as well as inspires them to be a bit more playful and experimental with their clothing. It is important to break out of the idea that men have to dress conservatively to be taken seriously. Life is a lot more exciting when you surround yourself with unusual!

Where can readers find out more about you?

I have two Instagram accounts @ugnelena and @ugnetusaite my online portfolio. 

Meet more of the VIA Design students Here.

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