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The Blog from Oi Polloi presents: by Neil Summers •

The following is taken from Issue 11 of Proper Magazine. To read the full version, get it here.

You can keep your Ibiza and your south of France, the place we really want to go to this summer is Sweden. We’re not fussed if it’s Stockholm or Malmö or Gothenburg or anywhere. Just Sweden. We’re not sure whether it’s our age and refined appreciations, or the increasingly ace clothing coming out of there at the moment.

Having recently got acquainted with Cristopher and Jockum from Our Legacy we sent Cristopher an e-mither asking him how he was feeling, what he was wearing, who does what, and whether he’ll let us move into his spare room. He declined to answer the last one but we’re working on it. To find out his reactions to the questions he did answer, read on.

For the uninitiated who are Our Legacy? Who does what?

We have tried to answer this question many times. Even now we have become more organised we still work as a small collective, and everyone has their say, which we still think is important. We want to be seen as a collective and we try to avoid hierarchy as much as possible. We work quite spontaneously. Our office has created more Islands, and separate working stations, but it still feels that we are all over the place sometimes as one single table.

What’s behind the name and the date thing?

At first, Our Legacy was working with graphic prints, and very conceptual themes. Our Legacy at that stage looked into different subcultures, and we wanted to experiment with them all. Now Our Legacy is trying to look back to this early stage and create our “own subculture” now when we have full collections. The numbers 1980-81 are the years we founders were born. Jockum and Richardos both 1980 and Cristopher 1981. Our youth and past inspires a lot still, so we thought this was suitable.

What were the big labels/looks for you growing up in Sweden?

In the 80’s / 90’s Armani was a hit, brands as Chevignon, Polo etc. The looks were mixed between skaters with freestyles and tight jeans, salesmen with colourful ties smoking Yellow Blend and college kids with bleached hair and dark eyebrows. Inanimate jean-washes and tassel-loafers with large coats and white sweats. There were more groups created in the schools, black metal, punk, skaters, hardcovers, greasers and preps, so the look was endless, as there was some kind of a breaking point of all subcultures, and then they got old.

I was speaking to Jockum over a vin rouge earlier this year (nice bloke) and he was saying what a big fan of Basquiat he is, have any other artists had an influence on your stylings?

Our generation is very influenced by Basquiat, he was sort of the last and the first artist of our generation.

The list could be very long, but there are also film/directors and photography/photographers that has exactly the same importance today, since it’s about documentary and everyday life. That has affected us strongly, how the everyday life can influence and how a picture can be so emotional. A good example is an artist standing in his studio, painting or talking to his girlfriend, the way he stands, looks, wears, his dog, the door, catches more the artists soul/mood, than his physical work. Or just a regular man dressed in a spontaneous way, walking on the street.

In terms of artists who influence us, it’s a mixture of Josef Beuys, Basquiat, Duschamp, Julian Schnabel, Hockney – along with many others. Photographers play a part too, like Takashi Homma, Rinko Kawauchi, Mapplethorpe, Bruce Weber, Anders Edström, Yoshihiko Ueda -the list could be endless.

If Our Legacy were an actor who would it be?

A hybrid between River Phoenix, Harry Dean Stanton and Sharon Stone, maybe.

How do you see Our Legacy developing in the future. What is the aim?

The idea of a single collection will change, and in the future we will be working with wider collections and broader distribution. The aim is to reach two totally different customers. We will have our own stores as a platform, develop these and make these stronger and locate them in specific cities around the world. A womens collection is on the map and we will hopefully proceed with this in the nearest future but it is still uncertain.

To read this in full, grab Proper 11. And to see the finery mentioned by Cristopher, check out Our Legacy.

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