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Binz of Villainous Visard – Interview

June 26, 2015

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 Returning to Urban Industry this season, UK brand Villainous Visard is back following a brief hiatus, with one of their strongest collections to date.

Villainous Visard or VV for short, is a brand that is deeply rooted in ‘the philosophies of light and dark’, producing simplistic monochromatic designs that draw from modern streetwear and sports luxe themes.  The brand gives a unique and contemporary take on progressive streetwear, utilising iconography and minimal branding throughout their collections.

The latest release aligns with the brands core aesthetic, with the return of polka dots, skulls and ancient imagery in symmetrical designs, as well as exploring new designs that draw parallels to Rorschach’s inkblot test. The name ‘ Summer Darkness’ offers a great overview of the collection, that arrives in a simple colour palette of black and white. Consisting mainly of strong graphic tees, there are also some carefully considered cut and sew pieces in the cotton lined ‘Reigns Jacket‘, as well as the fitted VV jogger pants, which sees the brands first move into producing trousers.

As a brand that has had a great response with us in the past, its great to see them returning with a collection that shows progression, while continuing to stick to the themes that made them so popular in previous releases. We are excited to see how Villainous Visard continue to develop from here.

In light of the “Summer Darkness” release, we caught up with brands head designer Binz…

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Hey Binz, how’s it going? Could you introduce yourself and tell us about what you do?

All good thanks, so my name is Binz and I am the brand designer at Villainous Visard AKA VV.

How did Villainous Visard get started?

VV started out of the love for early streetwear, where brands such as BAPE, BBC/Icecream, Supreme ruled, the latter still does. I was so addicted to BAPE and basically anything that came out of Japan, I thought I give it a go myself, motivated by some Dr Doom comics and a number of other comic book villains.

Is there a story behind the name?

The first part of the name is pretty self explanatory, whereas the second part Visard, also means Visor, or mask, which relates back to the comic book villains theme mentioned earlier and the fact that we all where masks metaphorically.

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Where do you draw influence for your designs?

Early VV was influenced heavily by golden era comics so it was big bold graphics and large type, but as time passed the look has been adapted to have a more streamlined and contemporary feel, but still maintaining our voice. If you go back the first drop, the design which Example rocks in the Tinchy Stryder video ‘ Game over’, you will see that the skulls on that particular T-shirt are the same skulls that have been adapted onto the latest ‘Xerxes’ T-shirt from the Summer Darkness capsule. Nowadays the influence stems from numerous places, but the aim is is still to create a nice balanced garment.

Throughout the years you’ve stuck to the Monochromatic theme for your releases. What’s the inspiration behind this?

The monochromatic palette reverts back to the comic book villain outlook of viewing the world. Good, bad, ying, yang, seeing the world within two tones, negatives and positives. Like the famous quote ’“Black is modest and arrogant at the same time. Black is lazy and easy – but mysterious. But above all black says this: “I don’t bother you – don’t bother me”.” ― Yohji Yamamoto

The UK market is becoming increasingly competitive for brands. Whats your view on the current streetwear scene in the UK and how do you set Villainous Visard apart?

The streetwear landscape has changed drastically over the last few years, with high street becoming more of a juggernaut everyday. It’s becoming very difficult for independent stores to compete, which has a knock on effect on small independent brands trying to start out as stores are unable to take risks on the newer brands. But give it a few years and everything will come full circle, it always does.

VV has been creating its pieces in monochrome since inception, so it is was only a matter of time until other brands caught up. The AOP skulls template was quite a fresh idea on the ‘Skulls Noir’ design back in 2013, which was copied pitifully by some UK brands, not to say VV was the first to do ever do AOP as we all draw influences from each other, but it did make me chuckle. I believe VV does have its own visual language and peeps know a VV Shirt when they see one, after all who doesn’t love those custom skulls!

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Talk us through your latest release…

Summer Darkness capsule builds on the strengths of where the last collection left off. Gone are the typographic t-shirts with big slogans. Now the focal point is to simply keep everything as tight a possible, with a clean crisp balance of graphics on the each garment.

You’ve moved into cut and sew in more recent collections. Is this something you plan on developing moving forward?

Yes, everyone kept asking when we were moving into cut and sew. We could of had cut and sew out last season to be honest, by placing VV graphics over any blank hoody and sweater, however the quality would have been rubbish. So this year we hooked up with a local factory, sourced some the finest materials, and decided to give it a shot and we are super pleased with the results, super deluxe!

What’s next for Villainous Visard?

Well, there is still the second phase of Summer Darkness to drop and still a few master plans that need to come to surface, so watch this space!

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The Villainous Visard ‘Summer Darkness’  capsule collection is available with us now. You can shop the full range HERE.