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Meet Anton Edelshtein of OMTURA whose industrial textured bags fuse underrated artistry with innovative, geometric shapes. The Tel-Aviv based label crafts leather accessories defined by industrialist minimalism. Futurist and sculptural in shape, these bags are handmade using a tough leather usually reserved for belts, and here the young designer irons out the details of crafting artifactual accessories
Omtura's kaleidoscopic pool of inspiration vary from the Spiritual origins of Shamanism to urbanism and futurism. Edelshtein has redefined the accessory with a bullet-proof aesthetic. In order to achieve a futurist, sculptural edge, these bags are made using tough leather usually reserved for belts. There are no machines that can stitch through such stiff leather, and all the bags are constructed by hand from start to finish in Omtura’s atelier.
Though Edelshtein’s designs are aesthetically remarkable, function remains just as considered and each bag is designed with the demands of the daily grind in mind. These are pieces made to sustain urban performance with subtle details like unseen pockets that blur the lines between function and artefact. NJAL sits down with the Anton to go behind the scenes with his bullet-proof brand and discerns the process of crafting industrialist minimalist accessories.
How did you get into fashion?
From a young age, I used to draw superheroes and warriors in my notebooks, where I always had a fixation with the small details. They had to be perfect in terms of feel and appearance. The perfect look and power-accessories were what made them complete.
Where are you from?
I was born in an Eastern peninsula in Russia, surrounded by the ocean and an amazing view. When I was 6 we moved to Kiev in Ukraine to join my grandparents. At the age of 15, after realising I needed a drastic change of scenery, and I decided to move alone and continue my life in Tel-Aviv, Israel.
How did you define your particular style or approach to fashion?
I’ve always believed that the fashion industry is obsessed with fads and trends. With my own personal creations, I try to work outside the seasonal world of design and create pieces that last through the years despite the changing world of fashion outside.
What has influenced your approach?
I've always been fascinated by the Bauhaus' FFF aesthetic (Form Follows Function), industrial power-tools and machinery.
What is the problem with fashion today?
I don't see a direct problem with fashion; it is simply a mirror of our reality, which is both great and terrible. I choose to look at life from a positive point of view and that applies to fashion too
What are you most proud of in your work?
I've always tried to keep my creations original and authentic. I never saw the point of trying to mimic other products that are already on the market as there is no reason to work on a design that already exists. So, I would say I am proud of the way I keep working on my own original ideas, and staying true to my own point of view.
Tell us about how you run your business.
I believe success can only be achieved if a team of great people works together. My business partner and I run the business with a small team of creatives. Each person has their own responsibilities but we always try to work together, in order to come up with the best possible ideas, and this includes all facets of the business—from photography, graphic design, marketing, PR, sales, etc
Do you have any other creative pursuits?
Creativity, in my opinion, starts when you look at the obvious things in a different way and realise that nothing is actually obvious.
What is the style of the city you live in?
Tel Aviv definitely has its own unique style. People here find it really difficult to define themselves culturally since there is a big mix of origins—they're not sure they want their style to be defined and inspired by European, American or Middle Eastern aesthetics which leads to an interesting clash of choices and looks.
In your own words describe your last collection...
For my latest range of bags, I drew inspiration from a wide range of worlds such as tribalism, urbanism, shamanism and futurism. This mix of inspirations came down to a minimalistic aesthetic that drew out the intersection between body and accessories in a new light. For this collection, I wanted to really highlight the bags' armour-like feel, so the wearer can immediately sense a connection to the piece—one that’s both physical and emotional.
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