SKIN GRAPH is a London based Multidisciplinary collective. Focused toward the fusion of Architecture and Fashion, with the articulation of the body in space as the core for all design driven processes.
Skin Graph’s objective is to create true Dynamic FIT apparel. FIT as dynamic performance in relation to activity and physical boundaries but also the FIT of the individuals’ personality so as to develop a true personalisation.
Through the development of advanced 3D mapping techniques, parametric design and data-driven fabrication processes, Skin Graph aims to address the engineered neutrality of optimisation. Skin Graph questions the practice of tailoring and proposes operative strategies that can inscribe the personality of the individual directly into apparel. With the underlining philosophy; that the individual must have a level of integrated authorship within the design process itself to truly create the bespoke.
Skin Graph continues research into advanced parametric design and fabrication processes, in order to develop manufactured materials and apparel. In addition to developing platforms that encourages the element of play into the design process. Skin Graph is increasingly more involved with scientific research fields with the focus on carrying out rigorous testing of behaviour, body language and fabricated performance.
Karl R Kjelstrup-Johnson AA Dipl, AA BA, BTEC. London
“Architecture for me is the choreography of space and the perception of this space as an immersive experience. I have great interest in the potentials of computational interface with data-driven fabrication processes. Developed spatial forms and strategies generated by manipulated physical presence/articulation and the relation to a particular temporal structure.“
Kjelstrup-Johnson is an architectural/hybrid designer, and co-founder/director of Skin Graph. He is intellectually motivated, a strategic thinker with a strong creative flare and a keen interest into algorithmic generative and evolutionary design strategies. Kjelstrup-Johnson’s main facets of interest are toward the cognition of space both at the personal micro level to the social/political macro level and how material, structured surface and volume can be articulated to generate altered states of consciousness.
Kjelstrup-Johnson began his career studying architecture at the Architectural Association where he was awarded a 5 year full scholarship through RIBA Part I and Part II. He successfully graduated in 2005 with BA honours and High Technical Pass and with AA Diploma with Honours nomination and High Technical Pass in 2009. His final project aimed to develop architecture as the digital representation and physical solidification of contemporary political values toward archaeology/waste in subterranean Naples, Italy. Kjelstrup-Johnson has since given lectures at academic bodies on this topic.
He has worked at internationally acclaimed architectural practices such as Grimshaw Architects (head of Computational Design Unit London), Halcrow (Urban Designer and head of 3D design) and NOX. His main focus has been toward Research and Development of high end innovative design utilising the latest materials, 3D generative and parametric modelling, mapping/analysis/visualization tools and rapid prototyping and fabrication techniques.
Kjelstrup-Johnson has taught advanced digital design within academic bodies such as the Architectural Association London, merging practical application and construction with academic theory. He is a key member of Smart Geometry; a collective of industry and academic leaders in architecture and engineering focused toward advanced computation and generative design.
Kjelstrup-Johnson now turns his full attention towards Skin Graph, furthering research into methods of articulating data derived through fit technologies and mapping techniques. Traditional tailoring methodologies treat the individual as an object from which specific measurements are taken in engineered neutrality devoid from any concept of sensation, feelings or thoughts of the intuitive mind of the individual. This qualitative data seems to be the “invisible” in any computational design system that is reduced to calculus, yet is fundamental to the design process. He seeks to build the “invisible” through tectonic response of advanced computational strategies.
Laura Michaels MA, BA. London
“Curiosity drives me to create innovative designs, The main facet of my work is the exploration of the bridge between fashion and architecture. I utilize multiple disciplines to question contemporary fashion and the concept of trend. Focusing on body form, anatomy, physical and psychological behaviour of the wearer, I manipulate designs to encourage the inscription of the individual’s personality.”
Laura Michaels is a fashion/hybrid designer and co-founder/director of Skin Graph. Michaels takes reference from multiple disciplines to question future fashion design to enhance her skills, knowledge and stimulation of mind. She has versatile skills fusing hand craft with high technology to push the boundaries within her practice.
Michaels embarked on her education at Westminster University completing her BA Fashion Design Honours in 2005, whereby she was selected to showcase her collection at Battersea Graduate London Fashion Week.
Then she went onto gain experience with a number of well-established fashion designers such as Preen, Ann-Louise Roswald, Kei Kagami and Monsoon. Michaels then spent the next three years working as a store Manager for Kurt Geiger, this helped develop her skills on a commercial level as well as establish consumers needs to gain first-hand experience of running a successful company. Running a retail business made her focus on the process of setting up her own company and to broaden her creative mind within her personal interests.
This led her to the forefront of completing a Masters with Distinction at Kingston University in 2010; which focused on the exploration of fashion, architecture and technology. Her final collection and interactive process “The future walk in closet” was exhibited at Vauxhall Fashion Scout.
The process of her work focuses on the individual’s personality, posture and performance. The measuring process becomes a playful and interactive set up, whereby the individual can select their personal style through exaggerating and disclosing certain body parts. The consumer controls authorship over their bespoke creation, their own choreography and individual involvement is the key element in the process of a tailored garment.
Michaels is experienced in tailoring techniques as well as manipulating fabric that gives a wearer a personal deeper meaning. Her main facet is the fabrication of bespoke apparel, taking 3D mapped data to generate a functional wearable product that enhances the wearer’s perception of themselves.