Alumni of NY was able to talk with IISE founders Terrence and Kevin Kim about sharing a vision and a collaborative process with pioneering visual creators DPR.
Alumni of NY is very proud to be the official US launch partner of the DPR x IISE collaboration. Could you talk about how that collaboration came about?
We have known the team from DPR since before they started the music label. We were introduced through a mutual "hyung" and went back and forth and related to our shared experiences of being born in America and moving to Korea to create something unique that we could share with the world. We could have collaborated earlier but we wanted to establish ourselves a bit more before putting something out. The entire process was very natural and was really fun to create the collection and visuals with them.
What was it like to work with DPR? What surprised you the most about working with them?
It's always inspiring to see how much they have grown and what they have in store for the near future. Every member of their team is incredibly talented and even from the initial meetings - all the ideas were flowing. We meet with them so often so the entire process was so seamless and at the end of the day, lots of fun.
DPR creates audiovisual experiences. IISE looks to Korean design but, with fashion - and especially with IISE - there is such a strong tactile element, a sense of texture as well. How would you describe where DPR and IISE overlap what that interplay creates?
Both DPR and IISE share many similarities in that most of our team is composed of Koreans born outside of Korea. Our approach and understanding of certain things, and our time really becoming adults living in Korea shape every aspect of what we create. They are a music label first and foremost, and wanted to create a collection of designs they wanted to wear, fashion items they wouldn't be able to produce on their own. We sat with the DPR team and asked them to sketch out their recent dreams and because they are so visual focused, it was interesting to see what they would sketch. We then arranged those drawings on both basic items like hoodies and sweatpants but also the rider jacket and denim set that would be worn by DPR Ian's character MITO, for his debut music video. DPR really put a lot of time into the visuals for this video and was able to present the collab pieces in such a unique way, something we would never be able to create on our own.
The collaboration centers around drawn images of dreams. How do dreams play into your creative process?
A lot of our imagination from our dreams can play creatively into all the visuals and sounds both DPR and IISE create and experiment with. Our minds are constantly thinking about work on the daily, and even occupy us when we sleep. But in our dreams, our imaginations run more freely and both parties have used these ideas and pushed ourselves for them to exist in the real world.
How do you think we can relate to what we see in our dreams?
We believe our dreams are a reflection of what's happening in our minds but are able to live outside the rules of reality. What we see in them sometimes show us what we really want in life and make us realize that anything is possible. We met with the members of DPR, before they were DPR and when IISE was also in the very early stages. There is such a synergy between all of us because we strive to do more and more and actualize our thoughts and goals. Working together on this level was also a dream of ours and we're excited to see what we can create with the DPR team again in the future.