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10 October 2016

#6 Patrick & Martin Jørgensen



The Scandinavian scene is often associated with cool, slick minimalism. But that's not all it is limited to: there’s also its flair for adapting established street cultures within its own aesthetic, showcasing characteristic venues such as ALIS Wonderland, and noteworthy brands including RASCALS'. We spoke to founders Patrick and Martin Jørgensen at Jacket Required spring/summer 2017 on growing up in Copenhagen, their memorable experiences as siblings, and the country's comparison with London's own take on streetwear and subculture.
 
 
When RASCALS’ first started you had the fixie bike culture in mind. How did you guys get into it?
 
Patrick: I think when the brand started, this whole fixie thing was starting in Copenhagen. Biking is a natural part of Danish culture, but here was this new way of going through the city. We were never part of the entire underground scene but we had our bikes, and it clicked to combine streetwear with moving around the city. At the time the bike seemed like a good symbolic meaning, but we've never been a fixie brand and removed the bike from the logo, because it was important for us to say we were so much more.
 
 
How has streetwear culture been re-appropriated in Denmark? Is there something that makes it unique?
 
Patrick: Well, I think all the bigger cities in the West have the same look. In terms of streetwear, you obviously have your strong local brands, which I think is what differentiates the cities. I am not sure if they are more loyal in Denmark, but they are definitely loyal to their local brands. When you look at the emergence of streetwear in the last five years or so, it has really been the local brands such as us, or WoodWood, or whatever was around and is around. 
 
Martin: I think it's evolving all the time. From my point of view, the streetwear scene in Copenhagen has become a bit too nice and a bit too dressed up. We really want to go in another direction. It has become way too grown up. It's really important that we stick with our roots within music and youth culture, the same way that when we use photographers who are usually new cool kids bringing something else into the brand. I think that has definitely been a path for us for the last few seasons. Not to make it childish, but brave and inspiring.
 
 
What was memorable for you when growing up, in terms of music, streetwear or other culture?
 
Patrick: I think for my personal experience, music has been a big part of my youth. You had these early teen years when you were really sensitive to new things. Like Radiohead's OK Computer: they are like religious experiences, you know what I mean? Something you always return to. Eighties or 90s horror flicks or other movies. Some things that are so connected to you, and just click at some point. For us, when we make collections with certain inspirations, we always return to the same places. There is a nostalgic feel.

Martin: We're brothers; we grew up in the suburbs. I'm seven years older so I grew up in the late 80s, early 90s, when it was a time of BMX riding through the suburbs all day. Just like the old ET movie. The feeling of my childhood. We didn't find an alien but we were always trying to look for something interesting in the suburbs. 
 
 
Is there something about London's culture or subculture that interests you?
 
Patrick: Yeah I really like the scene, especially after walking around in the past few days. Compared to what Martin said about Copenhagen – where there are a lot of white sneakers and it is very "dressed" – it is grittier here. The magazines have a certain aesthetic that you can't find anywhere else that I really appreciate. London has a more ‘lived in’ sense to it.

Martin: People might wear Gosha [Rubchinskiy] T-shirts and mix it with second-hand clothing, or a cheap jacket from H&M, because they are proud of the way they put it together. In Copenhagen it's so branded and it needs to be expensive.

Patrick: It's very conforming.

Martin: When you walk around London it's very inspiring.

Patrick & Martin: Good for you guys!


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Words By Karlmond Tang - karlmond.com | @karlmond

Photography - Impossible Project

 

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