Drawing supporters such as Onward Kashiyama, Mick Jagger, and Calvin Klein, Lincoln Mayne gives thanks to the power of word-of-mouth. With a mandate to find the common ground among the worldâ€™s possessions, Mayne exudes talent, inspiration, and intelligence through everything he creates. Not only a fashion designer, but a sculptor, installation artist, and package designer, the young Australian native has been a wandering soul for as long as he can probably remember.
â€œI was never happier than when trying to find the common ground between hot pink and dirt.â€
Format: Tell us a little about Lincoln Mayne, the fashion designer.
Lincoln: I like to keep it simple.
Format: Youâ€™re not just a fashion designer, but in fact a multi-media artist with a background in sculpture, installation art, animation, and other media. Why have you chosen fashion design as a form of creative expression?
Lincoln: Subconsciously fashion has always been a part of my perception of art and design. As far back as I can remember, I have been transfixed by textures and patterns on garments. Even back in art school I was constantly sewing and stuffing random objects and fabrics together–the wilder the contrast the better. I was never happier than when trying to find the common ground between hot pink and dirt.
Format: You grew up in Perth, Australia, have lived in London, UK, and now reside in New York. What are your observed differences between these three cities with regards to fashion and style?
Lincoln: I actually grew up outside of Sydney, in a tiny village in the mountains in a mud hut with some goats. Then I found my way across the desert to Perth, Australia, a city still of isolation. It is there that I discovered sculpture. In the late â€˜90s I took this newfound love to London where I seriously blagged my way into the BBC and became a creative director. Funnily enough I am going to London tomorrow to work on a solo show and design a fashion line for a client. I find that London has a more expressive, riskier fine art scene, but what really gets me going in New York is speed! If youâ€™re being let in on a secret here youâ€™re already too late. Here people die for the new, which makes it a great place to launch. The main difference between those two cities and Perth: I slept more in Perth.
Format: You produce a tailored streetwear with a slimmer silhouette. Please describe the Lincoln Mayne buying demographic.
Lincoln: My main following is through artists, designers, and creatively minded people who are searching to experience something unique and new.
Format: What types of fabrics do you use in your collections?
Lincoln: Basically Iâ€™m never limited to a fabric. I will use whatever feels appropriate. At the moment Iâ€™m into woven patterns. I have full facilities in my studio for sewing, printing, and dying, so often I will find a woven fabric and manipulate it in the studio before the actual garment is sewn.
Format: Youâ€™ve got a strong rockabilly undertone in each of your menswear collections; what inspires you from this era? What else inspires you?
Lincoln: I think new design is a fine balance between different styles and undertones. Obviously there is a strong electro undertone out there at the moment; I am moving towards muted electro tones mixed with neurotically bland fabrics.
Format: Being an artist of so many different media, how do you feel this helps your fashion design aesthetic? How does it hinder?
Lincoln: I am definitely not limited by media. In fact, I feel that there is only one true medium: personal aesthetic values. Being not limited to a physical medium allows me to think randomly and resolve design issues in a rapid manor; quite often I draw from the art world, but because I am comfortable with a multitude of different media I find it easier to adapt different ideas.
Format: In checking out your site, I noticed that you donâ€™t list a 2008 collection. Will you be coming out with a 2008 collection or are you currently taking a hiatus?
Lincoln: As far as my collections are concerned, I produce and deliver on my own time. This has always been the way. I unveil collections as I perceive they are finished. I am not restricted by seasons or delivery times. It is important that only the work that I feel is resolved goes into the market. The mainstream fashion industry may consider this to be taking a hiatus; however, I feel that this is the natural progression of fine design.
Format: Youâ€™ve produced animations for MTV and VH1, illustrations for Puma and Victoriaâ€™s Secret, and work for Sony. How does a self-titled menswear line differ from the corporate gigs?
Lincoln: Personally, I love the balance between private and corporate gigs. I regularly beg, borrow, and steal from one to feed the other. I always thought corporations were a great avenue for exposing art to a larger crowd. The main difference between my own projects and corporate gigs is deadlines–so both move at different rates of speed. I can move slower with my personal work, and go hard and fast on the corporate gigs.
Format: You used to design both menswear and womenswear. Why did you move into solely menswear now?
Lincoln: I have been mainly concentrating on menswear for the last several years. I feel there is unlimited potential for design in this market. It is a lot more complicated due to the volatility of sales; however, with a sculptural background I find menâ€™s wear enjoyable. I also will be going back to some womenswear in â€˜09.
Format: Your menswear collections have drawn attention from Onward Kashiyama, Mick Jagger, and Calvin Klein. How did you link up with these fashion icons?
Lincoln: As far as collaborating with the above-mentioned, I have been lucky enough to have the power of word-of-mouth on my side. Most of the clients that come to me, I can usually track back to previous clients.
Format: What is on the horizon for Lincoln Mayne, the fashion designer, in the next year?
Lincoln: Lately Iâ€™ve been totally geeking out on packaging design. First, earlier this year I was able to collaborate with my long-time supporters Bumble and Bumble in creating some menâ€™s product packaging. More recently I have been working on the design and creative direction for a tequila company, â€œTanteo,â€ which I will be helping to launch next month. Despite this new affair with packaging I havenâ€™t forgotten my other media. Last week I was down on Fisher Island in Miami illustrating for a coffee table book, and I continue to regularly collaborate with photographer Carlo Van De Roer. Also in the near future I will be launching an online boutique, titled LMAffair. This is going to be a fashion product site, where basically my affairs with design will be obtainable to the public.
More Info: http://www.lincolnmayne.com