“When I was growing up there wasn’t something that reflected who I was or who I wanted to be,” says Rene Matić, founding collaborator of Collusion. “That’s why Collusion feels hopeful to help form something for the coming of age.”
A new brand from the people behind ASOS; Collusion aims to cut through the bullshit of pseudo-political marketing and give us something real – size inclusive, gender nonspecific clothing that’s animal free and affordable.
But instead of relying on teams of out of touch industry experts to shape what we really want from our wardrobes, Collusion instead called upon six leading young voices from a variety of fields to shape what the brand will become. The first cohort sees Polyester issue eight alumni Chidera Eggerue aka The Slumflower joined by conceptual artist Rene Matić, body positive activist Grace Mandeville, multidisciplinary creative Clarissa Henry, visual artist Jebi Ndimuntoh Labembika and vlogger Spencer Elmer. Consulting on everything from the cut of a jacket to building up core values they feel vital to the brand’s authenticity; the six founding members will be replaced on an ongoing basis – with each new consulting collaborator insuring that Collusion is constantly a reflection of the world we live in.
Rene sees Collusion’s commitment to constantly evolve as not performative social consciousness, but a promise to continually strive to reflect our lived experiences – as opposed to having them watered down, repackaged and sold back to us. “Brands shouldn’t identify as ‘inclusive’ because it suggests that they have arrived at a destination and that their journey is complete. For Collusion to represent ALL of generation Z, the journey has barely begun. But it is the commitment that is important.” She continues, “we need mirrors in order to see ourselves, which is why Collusion has a big but necessary job on its hands to ensure that everyone’s voices are afforded space and agency.”
In this photo series featuring Collusion collaborators Clarissa and Rene, Rachel Hodgson shoots the brand’s first drop through a saturated, utopian gaze that reflects the future we hope to see from our wardrobes. Words by Ione Gamble.
Collusion is available from the 1st of October – see more here.