Richard Nicoll talks art, music and everything in between

Richard Nicoll talks art, music and everything in between

British darling

Text: Pakkee Tan

Fresh off his flight from London via Hong Kong to present his summer 2015 collection, we speak to the new creative director of Jack Wills

Of all the bright design talents in the United Kingdom at the moment, Richard Nicoll's star has been shining in the British fashion firmament since he showed his first collection in 2006. His strong sportswear aesthetic and boundary-pushing designs have earned him accolades in the industry and he was recently appointed the creative director of Jack Wills.

At the time, Wendy Becker, CEO of Jack Wills, said of the designer, "His collections have global appeal, but he is a British designer at heart and will lead the creative direction of our brand into its next important phase." With this in mind, we sat down with Nicoll for a quick chat at The Raffles Hotel when he was in town.

Richard Nicoll SS15

My favourite artists are... I'm actually a big fan of photography more than artists! Photography-wise, people like Wolfgang Tillmans, Collier Schorr and Juergen Teller really speak to me because I like the whole raw, deconstructed, '90s movement.

The last museum I visited was... The new Whitney Museum in New York last week, the day after the opening. It was really beautiful and really amazing.

The last book I read was... Kim Gordon's biography, Girl in a Band: A Memoir which is really interesting by the way.

My favourite musicians are... The Smiths and Morrissey! I still listen to similar music I used to when I was younger. I like bands like Arcade Fire, Radiohead and Florence and the Machine — I have quite a diverse taste in music. But I lost my music recently from my phone so I haven't been listening to anything at the moment.

Between London and Perth, I identify more with... London, actually. I've been in London for about 20 years. I really like the whole English attitude and the vibrant pop culture scene. Culturally and design-wise, I just think it's much richer than Perth.

If I had to choose a British sub-culture to identify with, I would choose... Brit pop for sure, because that was what my generation grew up with. Like Blur and Oasis, and the rest of the '90s bands. I need to get over it maybe!

The most defining moment in my career was... My spring/summer 2015 collection. It's one of my favourites. This season I did activewear and there was this one fibre-optic piece that was very techy — that felt quite directional to me.

Richard Nicoll SS15

My advice to younger designers is... To work for other brands. The job is really challenging, but I think it's a really good experience.

The naughtiest thing I've done is... Oh my God, I couldn't tell you. It's that naughty! [laughs]