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The Free International Laboratory section of visvim.tv interview Adrian Gaut who’s had an influential part in setting the aesthetic of F.I.L. stores throughout Japan and Hong Kong. The short interview really only delves into Gaut’s experience with visvim and his first experiences with the Japanese brand.
Do you come to Tokyo often? If you do, what are some of your impressions of Tokyo?
I do come to Tokyo a lot. This is maybe my ninth trip. I would say that there is like this kind of dichotomy in Japan where on the one hand it can be kind of chaotic and a little bit messy, and on the micro-scale the attention to detail and the aesthetic sensibility of the general population is incredibly high. In America, you have certain pockets of what kind of refinement, but it’s nothing that a general population could understand. There’s just a real sort of attention to detail for one, but also like a real simplicity that I am drawn to for sure. I think also the materiality is really nice and I think it’s especially more apparent in architecture, certainly within the more traditional buildings. It’s so contemporary feeling, but at the same time it comes from the deep history.
How did you first become familiar with visvim and what were some of your initial impressions of the brand?
Well I mean it’s funny because I didn’t know anything about visvim, I was here on an assignment for Vogue Hommes Japan to shoot the Tokyo store and to shoot Hiroki. My introduction to the brand was on one hand kind of interesting because Hiroki was involved, but on the other hand you don’t have a lot of time to dig into what it’s all about. When you’re there, you kind of shoot and then run. I was definitely impressed with Hiroki’s sort of philosophy about the design, and clearly I could see the attention to detail. We did the interview at the visvim showroom and then went through a lot of his ceramics collection and rug collection and it was all in Japanese so I didn’t get everything, but you could tell there was something more there. He was demonstrating this leather stitching technique, which is like a hidden stitch and that kind of blew me away. So, that definitely stuck in my head as something that was kind of interesting.