Vivian Ge is based in London and China after recently graduating from Winchester School of Art and University of Southhampton. The textile designer has a passion for designing patterns and materials in both the physical and virtual world. ‘Here is the Garden’ project has the intention of bringing the garden outside inside to cultivate space. Want to know more? We had the pleasure of speaking with her as part of our October Global Young Talents seen in Harper’s Bazaar UK!
In your collection ‘Here’s the Garden’ you use flowers, fruits and leaves to dye your yarn and fabrics; do you feel like using the garden to create the dye was an important part in your designs to create a feeling of warmth and healing?
Yes, it’s an important part of my design story. The collection was inspired by the garden, and it was the time when we were still in the lock down, I was not able to access the dye lab in my Uni. So, I thought that why not use the colours from the real garden. To my surprise, I found the natural dyeing process had healing effect on me and relieved my depression and anxiety caused by the pandemic in a degree. Instead of trapping in a closed room with all chemical stuffs as I used to do chemical dyeing, I was able to go to a garden to collect my dyestuff surround by soft breeze and the fragrance from flowers and trees. Then I can do all the following processes at home. The whole process has no chemical, which makes me feel much safer compared to normal dying process. Besides, I found the colours of natural dye turned out very soft, which brought a tenderness and springlike feeling to my collection.
In your paintings, you chose to use water colors instead of oil painting; what was the importance in choosing water colors for you specifically?
Compared to the oil painting, watercolour is admired for its transparency which allows the light to pass through the paint and reflect the back of the white paper to build a luminescent effect and to create a light and clear atmosphere as I intend to, which makes people think of spring and feel relaxing.
I was able to go to a garden to collect my dyestuff surround by soft breeze and the fragrance from flowers and trees
Nature seems very important to you; do you find yourself more at peace and creative when surrounded by nature?
Yes, my works are often driven by nature. I think nature is something before us. Everything on the earth is born from nature and nourished by it. Therefore, I always find nature is inspiring. Being in the nature makes me feel safe and peaceful.
I always find nature is inspiring
Do you prefer creating your designs in the physical world or the virtual world?
I think both ways are important to me. Creating in the physical world makes me feel connected to the reality and things around me. I like the feeling of touching the surfaces and objects in real. But by converting my physical materials to digital ones, I was able to gain better understanding of the space and see my designs to be placed in different places, which also contributes to conveying my ideas to vaster groups of people more directly.
You used many light, pastel colours in your collection; which colour was your favourite to use in your designs and why?
I like to use green and blue, because they are the main colours of nature. Green is the colour of trees and grasses, it owns the qualities of tranquil, refreshing, quiet and natural. Green is also the most restful colour to the eye. And blue is the colour of the sky and the ocean. It has a relaxing effect and offers the feeling calmness, security and comfort. All the senses are what I want people to feel from my designs.
Green is also the most restful colour to the eye.
Discover Vivian Ge full collection
Words by Holly Cramman