JOHAN KU

...creating sculpture-like silhouettes with unique materials

Born in Taipei in 1979, Johan Ku began his freelance graphic design career at the ripe age of 17. During his studies of fashion and textile design in Taiwan (both Bachelor and Master degrees), he was awarded numerous fashion design prizes. In 2005, shortly after graduation, the eager designer set up a studio and participated twice in Hong Kong Fashion Week 2007. His signature design aesthetic features sculpture-like silhouettes with emphasis on the volume and usage of unique materials. The "Emotional Sculpture" collection, created back in 2004, won the Avant-Garde Prize at Gen Art Style 2009 in New York. With his work being labelled “The Glory of Taiwan” by industry heavyweights such as Vogue, Elle, WWD and GQ, Johan soon became a hometown hero. The designer’s humble background, hard-working ethos and "never-give-up", inspirational attitude continue to inspire his local friends and family. In March 2010, Johan held his solo exhibition at the Taipei Fine Art Museum with his sculpture-like collections under the theme “Breakthrough”. His creations have been defined as a novel form of fine art, as international art collectors acquire his immaculate pieces.

Nothing inspires me like…
Interesting textiles or yarns. I often get inspired by new materials. It’s not only an important element of my design process, but also a starting point for my collection.

I hope…
I could live on an isolated island with only someone I love. It’s just a romantic dream and I know that it might be hard to achieve.

Cultural influences…
Can affect people’s minds imperceptibly. They also represent where and who we are in the world.

I got where I am…
Thanks to my commitment to hard work. Also, the support from friends and family can be the best encouragement in such a competitive industry.

Fashion can sometimes…
Make me feel bored and superficial. On the other hand, it can sometimes impress me in a very positive way.

Money makes…
Many things possible and often makes many things complicated. We cannot live without money, but it would be really sorrowful if we lived only for it.

Creativity comes from…
Studying a certain field for a very long time. It comes from rational development rather than a mythical emotion.

I have never…
Taken any kind of drugs in my life, and I'm not a smoker either. I don’t want to do anything that could damage my health, no matter how exciting it may seem.

My future is…
Not “mine to see”, as in the old song “Que Sera Sera”. So, I made up the goal for my future: avoid getting lost in the map of my life.

Pain comes from…
Something mental that can be healed if you stop caring about it.

My goal…
In my career is to do my own creation with 100% freedom, and the goal in my life is to find true happiness.

The earliest memory…
In my life was the night when my dad passed away in an accident. I was 3 at the time. I didn’t even understand the meaning of the word “death” at that time.

I don't think…
Fashion can’t be a sort of art, if designers can create something from their souls.

I like making…
A cup of black coffee without sugar in the morning to start off my day.

I wouldn't want…
To be a slave to fashion who does not know what he needs and what suits him.