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Q&A with Dusen Dusen: a gradient-on-gradient modular wallcovering for Visual Magnetics

Q&A with Dusen Dusen: a gradient-on-gradient modular wallcovering for Visual Magnetics

Fashion-forward textile designer Dusen Dusen has created a gradient-on-gradient modular wallcovering in collaboration with Visual Magnetics and WantedDesign. The pattern on this wall installation is interactive – viewers can play with it and change it as they observe the piece. Using magnetic ModuLayer wallcovering materials from Visual Magnetics’ Dynamic Spaces collection, bold shapes created using Dusen Dusen’s signature paper cut-outs method disappear and shift when they are moved around on the gradient background layer. We invite you to participate in the installation by playing with the smaller layers on the wall, moving them anywhere on the ModuLayer wallcovering to create your own pattern. Wanted Design Brooklyn is the premiere showing of this installation. More

Where are you from and where are you based now? Does the place where you live influence your work?

I grew up in DC and live in Brooklyn. My parents are architects, so whenever we travelled we our first stop would always be the tallest building in wherever we were going to. I always looked at geometry and line as a guiding principal in design, and design was always important in my youth. Brooklyn is very inspiring– there are a lot of people there who are very passionate about what they do, and being in this kind of creative environment is really motivating to get work done and to do it well.

We read that you studied “psychology of design and the brain’s reaction to visual stimuli,” is this still embedded in the work that you are doing now? And if so, are you focusing on something specific for your upcoming collections?

In college, I studied the visual system and how that relates to our perception of art and design in the brain. I am not necessarily consciously thinking about this when working on a new collection, but it informs my whole perspective on design in general. I specifically am interested in color and the way patterns read in the brain, which is why I think I have taken the path that I have.


How much is important to engage and connect with the public?

What I like about making clothes is that the person who buys them has to connect with the garments on a very personal level– they have to wear them on their body. I think art can sometimes be unapproachable and intimidating, but if you put it in a garment is immediately relatable. I like this idea of connection to people I’ve never met– if someone can feel like themselves in something I have designed I have done my job right!

How do you usually start when designing a new pattern? Would you describe your work as a performance process?

I usually start by looking around, going to shows and seeing what my friends are doing. I take a lot of pictures of things I’m drawn to, come home and look through the images to find common ground. Once I hone in on this, I start playing around with different materials and on the computer. It grows organically from there.


What is the concept behind the design for the installation in partnership with Visual Magnetics? Was there a specific image or object that inspired you?

I wanted to work with gradients on gradients, because I love the way these bold shapes can disappear within the color shifts depending on where they are placed. I like the idea of someone coming in and moving things around so they are very “contrasty,” or the total opposite. The shapes were made from cut paper.

How you envision people interacting with the installation?

I hope people will come in and move things around! The print is totally random and there is no repeat, so there is lots of room to alter the design and still have it look cohesive.

What is next? Can you give us a preview on your future projects and perhaps collaborations?

I just released a home textiles line featuring some of my favorite prints from the last 5 years of my clothing line. We made bedding, towels, rugs, pillows and poufs. I am really excited about the way everything came out. Keep your eyes peeled in August!