Cedric Rivrain, exclusive portrait by Quentin Saunier ©
Dear iDEALS, with numerous collaborations in fashion, assignments and collaborations with some of the most important names in fashion - inlcuding John Galliano & Dior, Rue Du Mail by Martine Sitbon, Lanvin, Balenciaga, Yaz Bukey - Cedric Rivrain only finds peace on his desk while drawing. With a very precise opinion about who he is and what his work is about, Rivrain manages to win everyone's attention with his talent and magazines like V, Vogue, Purple, Dazed and Confused...praise his visionary hand.
FilepMotwary: Hello Cedric how are you? We have been trying to set a date for this interview a while now. You seem to be very busy. What are you working on?
CedricRivrain: Busy and wild... I do not express myself as much as in my drawings. Words are not as important to me as drawings.
Lanvin / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: But it would take us years to finish this interview if you submitted a drawing for each answer.
C.R: (Laughs) I know so no worries, I am adapting to communicating this way! I am always busy as I do very different things. I do fashion illustrations, I do consulting for fashion houses, artworks for music. I just draw all the time and there is always something to draw and I of course have my personal drawings. It is important to me to keep on doing my personal work.
Comme Des Garcons / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: Oh really, how do you mean personal?
C.R: Those drawings that are not commissioned works, like the “Plasters“ or the “Robot Eyes” for example.
Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: Its has been 13 years since your first drawing appeared in Dazed and Confused. What has changed since then?
C.R: (Laughs) almost nothing! I still work the same! My drawings just got recognition.
Christopher Kane / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: And what has changed in your life based on that?
C.R: Since I can live through my drawings it became the most important thing to me. I mean I draw every day. I express myself that way. I am very lucky to live through my passion; since I got more recognition in my work, I also accept only the projects I feel close to. And I live my everyday life following my own rhythm, if I can't draw because I am tired I just go back to sleep! And I can spend nights drawing!
Balenciaga / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: I read somewhere that both your parents could draw and you had a special bonding with your mother, who was a great fashion admirer. Do you mind if we talk about them?
C.R: It is fine go ahead. I am always very happy remembering them! Yes they could draw, both of them. At this point every memory is very precious to me. Every single moment I shared with them is of the greatest value. They always believed in me and supported me since I was a kid. They used to get me all the materials I wanted to use to experiment in my drawing. My mother even let me use her make-up even, though for my drawings of course!
Prada / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: I find it very interesting that your brother also works in fashion. Why you think fashion made such a big in all of you Rivrain family
C.R: He does not anymore; he does his own music now. Well we grew up in a family very aware of fashion. Our parents always dressed up a lot. It came naturally to us. We felt home in the fashion industry I guess.
FM: Many artists can point out one particular moment in their early life, a moment of inspiration, sometimes a moment of enlightenment, where they realize “this is who I am and this is what I want to do.”
C.R: To tell you the truth, I have no idea! I just remember I knew I would spend my life drawing. I always knew this and I just know I grew up thinking that way and never questioning it.
Lanvin / Cedric Rivrain ©
FM: So it was decided naturally?
C.R: (Laughs) maybe yes, I had this talent and everybody used to kind of think of me as the kid who draws so I guess, I grew up as a guy who draws. Hope it does not sound too pretentious though!
F.M: Most of your illustrations seem unfinished; you tend to focus on two maybe three details…
C.R: Yes I get bored easily. I do not like it when it is too complete. It becomes too heavy for me. I like to get the essence that sometimes lies in a few details. I stop a drawing as soon as I feel I "said" enough.
Sugar Drama / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: Earlier this year you released your first book. How was it received? What was the aim of the book to begin with and how do you see this idea, a few months later?
C.R: This book is a mix of all the kinds of drawings I do. But in the same idea, not saying too much, so there are only 28 drawings. I am happy we did it that way because at the beginning I wanted to focus only on a certain aspect, which could have been more clear and easy in a way, it would have been a kind of story, but I felt it had to be more open for a first book. I see it as an introduction to my work, to my world.
Rue Du Mail by Martine Sitbon / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: Obviously fashion holds a lot of weight in your daily life, but outside of fashion what artists would we be surprised you follow or inspire to?
C.R: Oh a lot of my friends are artists and inspire me a lot, like Oscar Tuazon, K8 Hardy, François-Xavier Courrèges, Paul P., Emily Sundblad, Scott Treleaven, Nick Mauss… Paul P. actually wrote the introduction in my book and the launching took place at Balice Hertling Gallery.
Don't wanna lose you / Cedric Rivrain ©
F.M: What is fashion for you anyway?
C.R: Fashion is something like home to me. I have been working with it all my adult life. I know it very well. It is like a great friend to me. Sometimes, I feel good and safe around it and sometimes get in fights or get bored but in the end I keep on loving it and being faithful to it. But one thing is sure; it could not be my only friend!
F.M: You tend to mention friendship quite a lot. What does it mean for you
C.R: Do I? Really?
C.R: (Laughs) I am not really considering my career as something work-ish but more as collaborations with friends. I need to feel inspired and personally close to those I work with. As I can’t be a friend with people whom I do not appreciate the work…and who don't like mine either!
F.M: You sound a bit hard! Very sharp in the way you see yourself.
C.R: I'm very passionate about everything, maybe a little too much but I am soft inside, no worries!
F.M: Did you dream to be someone that everybody recognizes when you started off, or did you want your art to do all of the talking?
C.R: All I wanted was for my drawings to be seen and have an echo.
F.M: What matters to you mostly in what you do? What are your morals?
C.R: Emotion matters. I just hope that drawings are still a path for emotions and that it is still a language that matters.
F.M: What was one of your favorite assignments?
C.R: The very first one I did, a portrait of Yaz Bukey and the very last one, my brother's music artwork.
THIBAULT RIVRAIN music