TALENT 2006: Who Will Be the Rising Stars of 2006? Here, Our Experts Reveal the Faces to Watch in Art, Fashion, Politics, Literature, Film, Design, Music, Food and Sport

By Susannah Frankel et al | The Independent (London, England), December 31, 2005 | Go to article overview
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TALENT 2006: Who Will Be the Rising Stars of 2006? Here, Our Experts Reveal the Faces to Watch in Art, Fashion, Politics, Literature, Film, Design, Music, Food and Sport


Susannah Frankel et al, The Independent (London, England)


Fashion by Susannah Frankel

Roksanda Ilincic (left)

'I'm not a girly girl. I try to make delicate, beautiful, feminine things but they're always slightly odd; there's always something a little unusual about them,' says Roksanda Ilincic, the 30-year-old, Serbian-born designer. In September, her collection " 13 dresses, inspired by vintage haute couture " was the surprise hit of London Fashion Week. A garment's idiosyncrasy might lie in the fact that it has a hugely oversized sleeve, for example, or is trimmed with roses so large they look like they hail from Brobdingnag. It might be a juxtaposition of two fabrics: the finest silk chiffon, say, nestling up against something rather more ropey from the local market. Then there's Ms Ilincic's penchant for violently clashing hues " she's happy to admit that purple and burnt orange has long been a personal favourite.

Ilincic studied applied arts in Belgrade and graduated from London's Central Saint Martins (CSM) with an MA in 2000, then set up her company in 2002. Her reputation has grown slowly but surely and her style " which Vogue describes as 'gracefully whimsical' " has become more assured. The designer herself wears 'mostly vintage clothing " oh, and my own things, of course.'

Others to watch

Gareth Pugh

Having presented a glow-in-the-dark collection for spring/summer 2006, Gareth Pugh's designs are never likely to be described as boring. Big fur pantaloons were suspended from leather harnessing for him, with a red leather studded all-in-one with one-eyed gimp mask for her. The 23- year-old is a CSM graduate and has assisted Rick Owens at Revillon, dressed Fischerspooner and collaborated with Nick Knight.

Marios Schwab

In a season of homages to Azzedine Alaia, Marios Schwab's offering will stand out: at 28 he chose a tough act to follow and carried it off with aplomb. Schwab's second collection (part of Fashion East at London Fashion Week) was entirely black, red and white and was big on hugging flesh and light on fabric, with zips, small panels of metal and underwear as outerwear.

Last year's prediction: Ann-Sofie Back has seen a boost in sales of her diffusion line, Back, and launched Back menswear. She is now in talks about a collaboration with 'a well-known high-street store'. f

Portrait by Mischa Haller

Comedy by Julian Hall

Mark Watson (right)

Nominated for the Perrier Newcomer Award in Edinburgh this year, Mark Watson could easily have been nominated for the main award and would have been a deserved winner. A former member of the Cambridge Footlights the 25-year-old has been performing stand-up for just over three years but proved a hit, winning a number of prestigious competitions such as So You Think You're Funny. His stage persona is that of an absurdist Welshman but in fact he is from Bristol. His engaging style makes him an ideal MC, and his set is peppered with delightful if downbeat observations, such as: 'They say life begins at 40; the bad news is, it doesn't.'

In the past two years, Watson has completed two tests of comic endurance set by himself: his 24-hour show in Edinburgh 2004 and the following year at the Festival when he completed 2005 minutes. Both events produced inspired moments both from him and from the many fellow comedians who came to help him. A published author, Watson has been on his way up for some time but still has youth on his side, and with both radio and TV comedies in development, it looks like the next year or so will bring even greater rewards.

Others to watch

Laura Solon

The surprise winner of the Perrier Award, and the first woman to win it since Jenny Eclair in 1995, Laura Solon didn't quite come from nowhere. The 26-year-old's show was backed by a TV company and she had picked up representation from a big comedy agency. But one award does not make a career and the question is: can she deliver?

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