EXCLUSIVE: @VinandOmi x Ruby Modine – “Living In A Bubble”


Fashion designers and multimedia visionaires, Vin & Omi, have collaborated with actress and singer Ruby Modine (daughter of Hollywood actor Matthew Modine), to help promote awareness of Asperger’s Syndrome – an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) which causes restricted social and communication skills, and affects 68.3 million people across the world.

Following on from recent collaborations with Norwegian designer Fam Irvoll for LFW SS14, Felder Felder for LFW AW13, and styling / directing the video “Oh My God” by Them & Us – Vin & Omi have now unveiled their own artistic interpretation of the often locked-in world of asperger’s sufferers.
The result is a mesmerising and slightly trippy video entitled “Living In A Bubble”, directed by the pair, set to Ruby’s delicately beautiful
 vocals on her version of the Rolling Stones classic “As Tears Go By”, also released in 1964 by Marianne Faithfull.

Still from ‘Living In A Bubble’ © Vin & Omi

Omi is himself an Asperger’s sufferer, and spoke to me about how it affects his life as a designer.

“Autism and Asperger’s sufferers tend to obsess over things”, he explained. “For me, my obsession is fashion. It’s about knowing every little detail about how couture is created – the technique, the fabric, how many yards of fabric are needed – it all becomes an obsession, a need to be in control of every little thing, but that helps me to create, because I become immersed in the entire design process”.

Referring to the video’s title ‘Living In A Bubble’, Omi described how the syndrome has affected his ability to socialise, “I hide behind a façade. In 2004 when we first launched, every time we went out I used to wear a mask to hide behind, a mask of a sheep’s face, and I eventually became labelled as ‘the black sheep of fashion‘.
“People judge you so quickly in this industry, and I wanted to hide from everything. Now in my daily life I find comfort at home, in the pool or in my personal studio which I don’t let anyone into, and when I’m in there and it’s quiet, I become engrossed in fashion for 2 or 3 days in a row – it’s like my version of binge drinking! I get an absolute high from it.”

Discussing how the collaboration with Ruby came about, Omi told me, “When I first heard Ruby’s version of ‘As Tears Go By’, I listened to it for 3 weeks non-stop and every time I listened to it, I would cry. So I decided I wanted to communicate and explain who I am and why I’m the way I am, through music and visuals. I think lots of people who are creatives are quite fragile, and I wanted to find a way of making people aware of Asperger’s and maybe open up a discussion about it.”

Far from being the stereotypical Hollywood glamour-puss, rock ‘n’ roll edged Ruby has now become a muse for the design duo. “We love her look and vibe, she’s so Goth, and it works with our aesthetic. We’re now working on a few other projects with her which we’re really excited about”.

Premiering here exclusively, watch ‘Living In A Bubble’ below, and you can also read my upcoming interview with Vin & Omi exploring their signature scientific style, out next month on Districtmtv.com.