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Industry leaders speak to aspiring designers

Some 500 people listen as Gary Card talks about his projects at the Herald Design Talk 2013. (Park Hae-mook/The Korea Herald)
Some 500 people listen as Gary Card talks about his projects at the Herald Design Talk 2013. (Park Hae-mook/The Korea Herald)
About 500 people filled the LG Convention Hall of Ewha Womans University in Seoul on Wednesday, excited to see British designer Gary Card and French designer Jean-Charles de Castelbajac.

The two designers met and spoke with young aspiring artists and designers, many of them university students majoring in fashion, as part of Herald Design Week, which kicked off on Monday.

The venue was completely packed by the time the event’s host Julia Kang, the editor-in-chief of fashion magazine Elle’s Korean edition, introduced Card as the first speaker.

“We asked Card and Castelbajac to speak to the young audience specifically because their works have a close link to contemporary pop culture,” said one of the organizers.

“Card created a number of costumes and accessories for Lady Gaga. Castelbajac is known for his friendship with CL, the popular Korean idol singer. So we thought they would especially appeal to young aspiring artists.”

Many of the audience members took photos of Card’s PowerPoint slides as the designer, wearing a bright pink blazer with a purple shirt, shared some of his past projects, such as the famous black and white book cover design for Franz Kafka’s “Metamorphosis,” as well as the electric Christmas tree made from Chevy Volt parts.

One of the students attending the event was Kwon Soo-in, a student majoring in fashion design at Konkuk University in Seoul.

“It’s fascinating how he designs so many things, from a Christmas tree to costumes for Lady Gaga,” she told The Korea Herald.

Kwon Ha-jin, an assistant professor in Seoul Women’s University’s clothing science department, said she could see Card’s works inspiring many young artists present.

“He is a post-modern artist,” she said. “He uses very different materials to design a lot of different items. I think many young designers today desire to create works like Card’s and be able to work like Card. He is an all-round player. And I think it would’ve been even more meaningful if he also talked about his own philosophy behind his works.”

Nam Jung-mi, a fashion student at Korea Polytechnics, said she was particularly moved by Catelbajac’s sense of humor and playfulness. “It was great to see such a famous designer who knows how to make jokes,” she said. “Listening to his lecture made me realize perhaps design does not have to be always too serious, and it is also important to be flexible and take risks.”

By Claire Lee (
Korea Herald Youtube