Benjamin Huseby and Serhat Isik

Benjamin Huseby and Serhat Işık on Social Codes and Distinct Brands

Show Notes


The creative duo ⁠Benjamin Huseby⁠ and ⁠Serhat Işık⁠ is behind such brands as GmbH—the label they started out of Berlin—and the century-old Milanese fashion house Trussardi. Bringing diverse backgrounds in fashion photography and design, they discovered in each other the perfect collaborator. Today, they break down the social codes of different cities, explore the importance of creating communities, and learn how to lean into the cultural wealth, which at times left them marginalized, sees them sought out by a world where luxury constantly seeks a renewed and contemporary iteration. Generously sharing their personal journeys, we can glimpse the many ways that the past has ultimately informed their work today.

Episode Highlights
  • Exploring and figuring out a brand’s ethos, is a natural kind of reaction to being appointed to a position of taking over another brand, per Serhat.
  • Benjamin says that they are in many ways discovering Milan and also trying to kind of unpack the cultural significance of the brand, what it means to them and also what it could mean for the future. Especially to the younger generation.
  • Revitalizing the brand and giving it a new sense of creativity is the main thing, and we are still kind of working out the language, says Benjamin.
  • Italy as a market in general has historically been slower than most others in terms of New York, Paris or even London to become more diverse.
  • The topic of inclusion and diversity has been dealt with very differently from country to country and very much based on the local history.
  • During the first GmbH show in Paris, people wrote that their casting was severe or aggressive, but so much has changed in a very short time.
  • It's impossible to have a conversation just purely about aesthetics and design until we can get to a point where it's normal to have brown and black designers everywhere, says Serhat.
  • Benjamin moved from London to Berlin to sort of escape fashion a little bit, only to end up starting a fashion line together with Serhat.
  • There are times when we both get really exhausted by identity politics on a personal level, like always having to talk about everything that shaped you as a person, says Benjamin.
  • There are some structural issues within Germany. You don't inherit the citizenship or the school system which separates and segregates people of different communities, says Serhat.
  • While working with GmbH and Serhat, Benjamin really discovered an appreciation for his own heritage in a way that he didn't really have before.
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