Atelier Arty Apparel is a subtle combination of art and clothes. It springs from the desire to create clothes with a soul and energy of their own, thanks to artworks included in their design, breathing meaning and emotion into them. For this first edition, fashion designer Sabine Langlois has created a collection filled with emotions thanks to the artwork of photographer and painter Claude Turlan. Fabric becomes the medium of the artwork to offer a singular collection. Art gives another life to each work through the movement of fabric, dedicated to femininity. Atelier Arty Apparel is the meeting of a designer and an artist, the union of art and fashion.
Maison Sensey : How did it begin ?
Sabine Langlois : It just became self-evident in December 2014. At the time, I was working in an Events Management company, so I was already in a creative environment. That’s when the project was born, and it came from several sources that came together to make it happen. But let’s start from the beginning.
My father in law is Claude Turlan and he became an artist late in life, at the age of sixty. His story is already a beautiful one. He did photography his whole life and decided to attend the Beaux Arts school of art at sixty. He lived in Touraine and took very contemplative photographs of nature and birds.
At the Beaux Arts school, he was trained by a Serb painter who helped him transition from figurative to abstract photography. When you become an artist at sixty years old, obviously, you have a mature sense of aesthetics and a certain vision of the world. For fifteen years now, he has turned to fully abstract macro photography.
He is a seasoned artist; he lets paint flow on a ceramic slab and uses a highly photosensitive analog camera suited for macro photography. In the end, he obtains moving pigments on a square-centimeter surface. The paint flows and when he finds it interesting, he takes shots. He works with the infinitesimally small, and from this one square centimeter, he makes 120/80 formats. He stretches the infinitesimally small.
How would you describe your collection ?
This is my first collection, and I am in the process of structuring it to reach high-end quality. There are two digital printing techniques on fabric. Sublimation printing is performed on fabrics containing more than 50% polyester to preserve very bright pigments. When working natural materials such as silk or cotton, the digital printing technique is a four-step process. It is more complicated and riskier in terms of color finish.
As my first concern is the reproduction of the artwork, I mostly work with sublimation printing, and thus with polyester. But to obtain high-end products, I associate polyester with more noble fabrics. I love designing tops for active women who want clothes that match their personalities and are elegant. I try to create designs that will densify the print of the artwork. The design adapts to the artwork.
For example, I created a neoprene design with a Japanese-inspired cut, which I find interesting in our modern approach. It is a confrontation between the artistic Asian culture and our western structure. Our approach is more assertive, more daring regarding fashion techniques, while they have a pictorial tradition where gestures count, and that’s what I wanted to capture. And I found this approach in Claude’s art. The two years I spent in Thailand taught me that too.
In the end, my range of clothes will have a strong focus on women’s tops, kimonos with back patterns, silk tops, chic sweatshirts, and panel tops. Luxury in Asia is very inspiring because it is accessible. Details are always very well-made. My true motivation is to share beautiful things, people really need beauty today. Until I turned twenty, I lived in the countryside and I spent my teenage years drawing and sewing. I loved materials, fabrics, patterns, I read many magazines and I don’t know why I ended up going to a business school!
I started my career in communications and event management. It was a great experience because events management consists of staging a company’s image in three dimensions. There is music, sounds and images, video, graphism… It was also a form of expression and I mostly worked with talented people.
After that, I lived abroad with my husband for seven years and learned about textile creation. In 2006 I arrived in Thailand where I stayed until 2008. There, I met women of great artistic maturity with whom I used to paint. That’s when I learned about color and technique. Those two years in Thailand were an intense experience of nature contemplation. Thailand’s nature is breath-taking. It inspired me and I started painting t-shirts because I already felt the need to breathe life into art through textile.
I was very lucky to experience all this in Thailand; I constantly encountered art and nature. I also learned Chinese painting, which is above all a form of meditation. I came back to Paris where I started working in events management again for seven years because I love teamwork. But I really wanted to do my own thing and that’s how Atelier Arty Apparel was born.
Mr Turlan, what is your artistic approach ?
Claude Turlan : It is photographic originality. I take photographs in studio; they are macrophotographs (around one square meter) of oil paint drops, with a great combination of colors, laid on a flat surface. The photograph’s intuitive eye frames them according to what they sense to be harmonious shapes and colors.
Among thousands of shots, a nearly miraculous beauty sometimes bursts forth from the material in its natural state. I found this photographic process to materialize through optics what Leonardo da Vinci had already observed: “You should look at certain walls stained with damp. You will be able to see in these the likeness of divine landscapes, adorned with mountains, ruins, rocks, woods, great plains, hills and valleys in great variety; and then again you will see strange faces and costumes, and an endless variety of objects, because your spirit is aroused by this profusion, and you will find many inventions in it.”
The photographs, taken on analog film, are the result of many years of trial and research and have been classified and filed. They gave way to several theme-based exhibitions, in the form of photographs on large format aluminum panels.
Some of them look very much like paintings and have been used as sketches to create oil paintings on canvas, as Claude Turlan is also a painter. Other photographs have been associated to poems in an art book. They were not initially meant to illustrate poems, they preexisted as is. Material and mind met to give birth to wonderful “Correspondences”. The most graphic photographs could be used as a base to create tapestries or stained-glass windows, for example.
What is your outlook on Atelier Arty Apparel ?
Claude Turlan : It is a beautiful adventure gathering two passionate artists in an artistic momentum. It gathers two generations: father-in-law and daughter-in-law. In Amboise, a beautiful part of the “Garden of France” that is the Touraine region, my pictures were resting quietly in my photo studio. But in Paris, through imagination and creativity, Sabine’s sewing hand laid them on beautiful fabrics, and my photographs flew the nest towards a new life.