The Art of Fashion: Aoife Wasser @ Dublin Contemporary.

May 1, 2014
I remember distinctly when I first happened upon the name Aoife Wasser. I was about 17, trawling through blogs and it was while perusing former-model-turned-photographer JD Ferguson‘s, that I came across an unmistakably Irish name. In a blog-post on a Visionaire event. In New York.

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^ Linda Brownlee (Left) and Aoife Wasser (Right)
Naturally enough, I decided – based on Wasser’s surname, that this wasn’t one of our own who had somehow made the move to one of the world’s fashion capitals and infiltrated the ranks of arguably the most prestigious arts and fashion publication, but rather the child of parents with a penchant for all things Gaelic. I was wrong. 
Aoife Wasser is, in fact, Irish, and recently returned to her home country to share her thoughts and highly cherished nuggets of wisdom with an audience all ears. Invited by Dublin Contemporary, Ireland’s first biennale, to be interviewed by Irish-born, London-based photographer Linda Brownlee (whose own work is worth a perusal, especially her series on Achill Island) for the event The Art of Fashion, Wasser told of her beginnings (studying for a degree in Visual Communication at DIT), moving to New York and her almost incomprehensibly upward career trajectory from that moment on.
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^ The Lounge at Dublin Contemporary
Having moved to New York intent on nothing more than securing an internship for the 3 months her visa permitted her to stay, Wasser ended up at David Carson‘s studio (the “art director of the era” according to Creative Review London) and never returned home (except, of course, for visits). Having had her portfolio ripped to shreds (figuratively, don’t worry) by Carson, Wasser was quick to impress. From there, she moved on to Visionaire, the luxury multi-format arts and fashion biannual which channels a specific theme each issue, be it Scent, Taste, Sound or Chic.
Whilst at Visionaire, Wasser worked with a small team on a range of projects (V Magazine, V Man and V’s advertising agency), moving from indispensable intern to Junior Designer to a Vis Com grad with that oh-so-holy of grails – a sponsored visa, something every NYC-obsessed Irish grad desires, but rarely procures.
In 2008, Wasser moved to the more commercial arena of Condé Nast publishing, taking up the role of Creative Director at Teen Vogue where it was, according to the woman herself, all about the “smile ratio”, and where Wasser encountered a brattish Justin Bieber (what a surprise!), who demanded “an apple pie, a Subway sandwich and a can of Coke” on meeting Wasser who introduced herself as Art Director, not lowest-rung Intern.
Now, having left the world of adolescent apparel, Wasser runs her own consultancy in New York and is currently working with venerable publishing house, Rizzoli.
Not only was Wasser warm, insightful and inspiringly ambitious, but also grounded, hard-working and endearingly modest. It’s a combination, she admitted, that’s seen her reach the level of success she’s enjoying right now.
See photographer Linda Brownlees’ work here. View V and Visionare publications here and here

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  • we're having a moment November 22, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Theres me in the white shirt on the left in the second picture…What a great talk…DRN