corona-safe street exhibition



Advertising:
Wilgart
Photo Rigetta Klint
English translation: Dorte H Silver



‘Because we are sure there are lots of people out there who would like some beautiful hand-crafted headwear – they just don’t know it. And above all, they don’t know that we can make them a bespoke piece,’ says Silas Skram, the founder of Wilgart, which is based in Jærgersborggade in Copenhagen’s Nørrebro district, when I ask him what possessed him and his business partner, Tomas Chovan, who is a production technologist, to spend two months creating a virtual exhibition about their profession. Silas adds, ‘Every month, when we take stock, we find that we spent most of our time sewing caps and very little time promoting our brand and developing our company. So now, we are making that a priority.’

I was invited to a preview of their corona-safe street exhibition ‘Kasketten i det 21. Århundrede’ (21st-Century Cap). The exhibition is on display in Jægersborggade from 11 to 22 November 2020, it is open every day from 10.00 to 16.00.

At first glance, this very enjoyable exhibition appears to consist of 25 photostats. They are fascinating in themselves, but there’s more to them than meets the eye: using the specially made Wilgart AR (Augmented Reality) app, viewers can point to a photostat to turn it into a living story about the many facets of the trade. You can almost see and feel the tools and the materials, and if you want to see them in real life, or if you’re inspired to go shopping, you can swing by the shop in no. 10.

Among the features is an interview with Silas’s German mentor, Mr Bullmann of Bullani Mützen in Bamberg. His cloth caps are sold alongside Wilgart’s own. Apropos of Mr Bullmann, over a cup of coffee in the back room to the shop, Silas told me how he hitch-hiked through Germany 10 years ago, at the age of 23 years. He had hit the road mainly because he did not have a place to live in Copenhagen, and he was definitely not looking for someone to teach him a trade. By chance, his travels took him to a place near Bamberg, where he saw a cloth cap he liked. When he learned that the company it came from was just 100 km away, he decided to take a closer look at the craft. He wrote to the company and was granted an appointment with Mr Bullmann himself. Initially, Mr Bullmann was sceptical, not to say dismissive, but eventually he invited Silas to stay in his house and learn the trade. In return, Silas would work as his assistant. Silas ended up staying for a month; during this time he sewed more than 20 caps, which he sent home in a box before going back on the road.

The rest of story is about continuing to make caps ever since, with many return visits to Bamberg to learn more – it takes a long time to become a competent cap maker – about establishing his own company, initially in a small studio without a window towards the street, while studying accessory design and business administration at KEA – Copenhagen School of Design and Technology. Today, he is based in Jærgersborggade, where he established a combined shop and studio in 2017.

The story also includes teaming up with a business partner who shares Silas’s goal of running a contemporary craft company. ‘We don’t want to decorate our place with old tools we never use, just to maintain a romantic artisanal look,’ says Silas.

Wilgart sells modern hand-crafted caps in high-quality materials and many variants, including sailor’s caps and classic German woollen caps. The makers will also tell you everything you need to know about the care and maintenance of your headwear and provide you with the necessary accessories.

If you would like to know more about Wilgart, their website is worth a visit. Here, you can also browse through their web shop, which has a wide selection in many different genres.

Practical info: To use Wilgart’s app you need a smartphone with at least Android 10. Visitors who do not have that can borrow a tablet for an hour in the Wilgart shop.

Jægersborggade offers lots of other great shopping options – in fact, it is an entire street of carefully curated boutiques, many with a crafts profile. One of my personal favourites is the caramel shop Karmelleriet in no. 36. I also really like Camilla Plum’s Landhandel (General Store) in no. 17, GRØD in no. 50 and soon, Katrine Klinken opens Honning (Honey) in no. 49.









PÅ DANSK - coronavenlig gadeudstilling



”Fordi vi er sikre på, at der går en masse mennesker rundt derude, som savner en smuk håndlavet hovedbeklædning, de ved det bare ikke, og frem for alt ved de ikke, at de kan få den syet hos os, siger Silas Skram fra kasketmagervirksomheden Wilgart, som har til huse i Jægersborggade i København, da jeg spørger, hvorfor pokker han og hans partner Tomas Chovan, som er produktionsteknolog, har brugt to måneder af deres liv på at lave en virtuel udstilling om deres fag. Silas fortsætter: ”Hver måned, når vi gør status, så viser det sig, at vi igen igen har brugt hovedparten af vores tid på at sy kasketter og meget lidt tid på at gøre opmærksom på os selv og på at udvikle virksomheden, det er det, vi nu tager livtag med”.

Jeg var inviteret til preview på deres coronavenlige gadeudstilling "Kasketten i det 21. Århundrede". Udstillingen hænger i Jægersborggade fra 11. til og med 22. november 2020. Alle dage kl. 10:00 - 16:00.

En virkelig fin udstilling, som umiddelbart i form består af 25 fotostater. De er i sig selv betagende, men hvad bedre er, når man med den tilhørende Wilgart AR (Augmented Reality) app peger på fotostaten, bliver den til en levende fortælling om fagets mange facetter. Man kan næsten se og føle værktøjet og materialerne, og hvis man vil føle rigtigt efter, eller hvis man bliver inspireret til at handle, så kan man svinge forbi butikken i nr. 10.

Blandt indslagene er der interview med Silas' tyske læremester Herr Bullmann fra Bullani Mützen i Bamberg, hans sixpence bliver forhandlet side om side med Wilgarts egne caps. Apropos Herr Bullmann, så fortalte Silas over en kop kaffe i baglokalet, hvordan han for 10 år siden som 23-årig blaffede gennem Tyskland, mest fordi han var uden bolig i København og i hvert fald ikke for at opsøge en læremester. Tilfældet førte ham i nærheden af Bamberg, her så han en sixpence, som faldt i hans smag, han erfarede, at producenten var bare 100 km borte, fik lyst til at se nærmere på håndværket, skrev og fik foretræde for Herr Bullmann. Denne var først noget skeptisk for ikke at sige afvisende, men endte med at invitere Silas til at bo hos sig og lære faget at kende, mod at Silas kvitterede med at agere arbejdsdreng. Silas blev en måned og syede i perioden mere end 20 kasketter, som han sendte hjem i en kasse, inden han blaffede videre.

Resten af historien handler om at have syet kasketter siden, om at have været tilbage i Bamberg mange gange undervejs for at lære mere, det tager lang tid at blive en kapabel kasketmager, om at etablere egen virksomhed, først i et lille lokale uden vindue til gade, mens han læste accessorie-design og business på Københavns Erhvervs Akademi, nu siden 2017 med butik og værksted i Jægersborggade.

Historien handler også om at have fået en kompagnon og om at ville være en moderne håndværksvirksomhed. ”Ikke noget med at vise gammelt værktøj frem, som vi alligevel ikke bruger, blot for at romantisere”, pointerer Silas.

Hos Wilgart kan man købe moderne håndsyede caps i forskellige lækre materialer og varianter, man kan købe sailor caps eller en klassisk ulden sixpence fra Tyskland, og så kan man lære, hvordan man plejer og passer sit hovedtøj og købe det fornødne udstyr.

Hvis du vil læse mere, så er Wilgarts hjemmeside et besøg værd, og her finder du også webshop med et stort udvalg i alle genrer.

Service info: For at bruge Wilgarts App skal man have en smartphone med minimum Andriod 10. De besøgende, som ikke har dette, kan gratis låne en tablet i én time i butikken Wilgart.

Når du alligevel går i Jægersborggade, er der meget andet at se på og købe. En hel gade med omhyggeligt kuraterede butikker. Mange af dem med en håndværksprofil. En af mine favoritter er Karmelleriet i nr. 36, jeg er også ret begejstret for Camilla Plums landhandel i nr. 17, GRØD i nr. 50 og inden længe åbner Katrine Klinken med Honning i nr. 49.