The legendary Erykah Badu, known for her 90’s fusion of Soul and Jazz music and classic records, has been busy touring, being a mother and working on her new upcoming album. Also known for her creative and eccentric style, the Neo-Soul Singer/Songwriter has recently been appointed as the new face of Givenchy. Italian designer and Givenchy’s creative director Riccardo Tisci and Ms Badu sat down with V Magazine to talk about the latest venture and why Badu is a great match for the fashion label. Read an excerpt from the interview below and head over to V Magazine for the full interview.
V In addition to being an incredible artist, you’re also quite a fashion magpie. Are clothes another mode of expression for you?
EB It’s all art to me. I just really enjoy expressing myself artistically in any genre. Whether it be music or cooking or hair. Costume, makeup, fashion. It’s just fun exploring all of the little things inside of my head and seeing them manifest. I would liken fashion or styling to putting a lump of clay in the middle of the table and carving away. And there’s something underneath. Layering and silhouettes. A pair of earrings. I think it comes down to my favorite things and how they come together. That’s fun when that happens.
RT And this is one of the great things that drew me to Erykah. Aside from being quite talented, and the queen of the ’90s. I was thinking of someone who was quite elegant and urban. She’s always been this way. She has a very good sense of style, she’s great with jewelry. Her look can be quite feminine with the turban and a dress but also masculine with flat shoes or trainers. It all works.
V Can you talk about the shoot with Mert & Marcus?
RT For me it’s all about family. They are like family. Erykah, once we met on set, we fell in love. Now she is family.
EB They are just so awesome. They want to work with the artist and the model to make sure that she’s seeing what exactly is going to appear. I think that’s really kind and generous. And I love Riccardo’s heart. I like that he’s very thoughtful in his art and his design. Not only does he have a superb eye for silhouette and technique, but he also has an imagination that’s pretty out there. That’s why we get along pretty well. He allowed me to contribute to the style of the shoots.
V How so?
RT She put the looks together in such a strong way. I was really very impressed. Some celebrities are in campaigns for money or whatever but it’s forced. But I only want to work with people that I love and respect. With Erykah the energy was already there. This was perfect because in a way we belong to each other, we help each other as artists.
EB I love this idea of bringing these garments artistically into function. It’s functional art that Riccardo does, basically. That’s what I do as well. We speak each other’s language. We check on each other. He’s taught me a lot about fashion and lines and the way he sees. I really appreciate the way Riccardo sees. He reminds me to be fearless.
Photo Credit: $hoki $hoot