The former L’homme Rouge designer’s new accessories brand
Founder Jonatan Härngren doesn’t see his new concept Kultur5 as a brand, but a platform for experiments.
By JOHAN MAGNUSSON
July 24, 2020
Founder Jonatan Härngren doesn’t see his new concept Kultur5 as a brand, but more the name of a platform, structure, and a room for experiments. ”I wanted to answer one question: How can I create something that is inspired by culture, offer products, having a studio, but not being too much of a fashion brand? It might be impossible but something to strive for,” says founder Jonatan Härngren.
Kultur5 is also projects where he makes studies of ethically sourced materials, places, cultures, and products.
— We strive to educate with every project, to be informative and transparent.
He grew up outside of Gothenburg and with a dad working as an artist, he spent almost all the time in his wood workshop.
— Shape, material and color became a natural way to express myself.
Starting in 2008 he studied industrial Design in Italy, followed by Textile art in Stockholm, Fashion Design at Royal Danish Academy Of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, Denmark. Shortly after, he became Creative Director and designer for critically acclaimed men’s fashion label L’homme Rouge, where he spent almost 7 years. Since August last year he’s been working for different brands, while developing Kultur5.
— I wanted to answer one question: How can I create something that is inspired by culture, offer products, having a studio, but not being too much of a fashion brand? It might be impossible but something to strive for, says Härngren, continuing,
— I want to focus on exploring, documenting, and defining the ”space in between”. It could be the space in between perfect and non perfect, finished and not finished, diversity, cultures, and groups emerged between two others, fragments of different objects put together. The ”space in between” is going to be the leading word in the beginning of every upcoming project.
Kultur is the Swedish word for culture, and is used to enlighten the importance of collective thinking, and studying objects and materials together.
— I’ve always been fascinated by art schools, their way of thinking, studying something together, and also because they are in the space between creative freedom and commercialism, which was one of the starting points. Let’s call it a culture, independency, a slow project where products are being released organically, where we always strive to keep a kind of freedom. This project allows me to be close to both the idea and the product itself since it is not dependent on too many producers. I wanted to work closely with manufacturers, not become dependent of too many places and persons, and be close to both the idea, inspirations, and the product itself. Therefore Sweden became a natural choice. Every product is handcrafted in Sweden.
Tell us about your first range of products.
— The first project, Conversations on the cliffs, is an idea I’ve had for a long time. A very personal series of jewelry for both men and women, based on my upbringing close to the archipelago, south of Gothenburg. The rocky cliffs, stones, deep conversations and rough music, youthful freedom, diversity, dry wooden bathhouses, and the soft and reflective, poetic ocean. The place is loaded with those feelings, and the idea was to copy a part of this place, stones and structures into another material. Silver became the natural medium, thanks to its abilities and softness to get shaped after another material or shape or surface. In this way, we could copy stone structures into the silver. We called the process copying nature. Silver also has the reflectivity, as the ocean, which was interesting, says Härngren.
The collection is genderless and has a raw expression with the oxidized stone structures.
— I wanted to get away from too much masculine expression and make them more fragile and poetic. Therefore they are not too thick and heavy. It’s about 5 different styles, including a lazer cut metal package (pictured above). Right now I am working on a bit more clean variations of the products that will be released in a couple of weeks, including a bracelet and necklace, says Härngren, adding,
— We will always keep the jewelry as a part in every project. In the coming project, which we’ve already started, we are working with aluminium and other reused materials. The project is based on the idea of personalities and form pressing, and will be released around August. •