The Head of Fashion and Textile of the Royal Academy of Art The Hague on his return to designing and how it brought him new perspectives on the future
Eye on the future
After discovering the extraordinary work of Belgian fashion designer Jurgi Persoons by chance, a little under ten years after his eponymous label closed shop in 2003, the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp graduate continued to be much of an enigma. The legacy of his raw-edged romantic vision includes punk-spirited seasonal presentations in Paris along the bank of the Seine and on a deserted parking space, at that time breathing new life into the anti-fashion spirit of the Antwerp Six (and Margiela), who had started a decade earlier. As most of Persoons' vision (who withdrew from the fashion world after 2003) lays hidden in a time before the internet started absorbing everything that takes place, only bits and pieces are still to be found now, with every once in a while a piece from his hands popping up on eBay.
Six years ago, after years of working in the printing workshop of his partner, Persoons had returned to fashion, but in a completely new capacity: as a teacher at the Royal Academy of Art The Hague. There he becomes the Head of Fashion and Textile in 2013, which finally granted me the chance to sit down with him and learn more about what had fascinated me for so long, right before the graduation show of 2016. With the new graduation show upon us tomorrow, we sat down another time to speak about the rather eventful last twelve months and how it brought Jurgi new perspectives, both as Head and through the (highly surprising!) return of fashion design in his life. [ Continue reading ]
The heartbeat of luxury
The heartbeat of luxury
We meet Italian fashion designer Davide Marello at an interesting time in his life. Only a few weeks before the sunny Saturday afternoon in the last weekend of February, when we meet in Bar Luce at the Foundation Prada Foundation, he has left his position as the very first creative director of Boglioli: the 100-year-old tailoring company that reinvented itself at the beginning of this century through a distinct broken-in and garment-dyed aesthetic. Marello’s departure took place silently, gathering even less attention than his surprising and therewith underexposed appointment two years earlier. Nevertheless, for those who were paying attention: the recent ‘intimate’ presentation of the Autumn/Winter 2017 collection, instead of the usual runway show, could be clearly read as a marker that things were in turmoil, to say the least. [ Continue reading ]
Unfortunately it took a little longer to share this than we hoped, as it has been some weeks ago that we sat down with British artist John Stezaker when he visited Antwerp for his duo exhibition that closed today at Gallery Sofie Van de Velde, which juxtaposed his collages with the work of Belgian artist Marcel Broodthaers. Meeting Stezaker, gave us a highly enlightening conversation, but due to our busy schedule in the following weeks, it took time to prepare the text for sharing. What's particularly striking: the (shameful) fact that we publish the conversation on the very last day of his exhibition in Antwerp, pretty much feels like the perfect metaphor for the complete career of the artist, who started in the 70's, but had to change art for lecturing, as nobody seemed to understand his surreal vision in times of (British) conceptual domination.
At the beginning of this century, Jake Miller of the London-based Approach Gallery changed all this by introducing his work to the world. Stezaker debuted a solo exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery in 2011 and was granted the Deutsche Börse photography prize in 2012, becoming one of the first non-photographing artists to be granted the prize. His work re-examines the various relationships to the photographic image: as documentation of truth, purveyor of memory, and symbol of modern culture. In his collages, Stezaker appropriates images found in books, magazines, and postcards and uses them as ‘readymades’. Through his elegant juxtapositions, Stezaker adopts the content and contexts of the original images to convey his own witty and poignant meanings.
This exhibition might be over, Stezaker's wise words on his surreal imagery will remain relevant long after today, having stimulated many new thoughts in our minds about contemporary visual culture.. [ Continue reading ]
Last Friday, the doors of the beautiful Capital C building in Amsterdam have opened for BIG ART. The new initiative of curator Anne van der Zwaag presenting over 50 XL artworks by contemporary artists and designers, running until the 27th of November in what used to be the Diamant Exchange of the city. A unique mix of acclaimed names and upcoming talents, monumental paintings, drawings, large sculptures, big photos and huge installations. As one of the official partners of BIG ART we will present some of our favorite artists included in the curation of van der Zwaag. Today, we focus on a longtime favorite of ours: Amsterdam-based artist Marijn Akkermans, with whom we talked about the development in his work after graduating from the art academy 15 years ago, the pressures of modern society and the installation-like presentation of his incredible work at BIG ART. [ Continue reading ]
This coming Friday, the doors of the beautiful Capital C building in Amsterdam will open for BIG ART. The exciting new initiative of curator Anne van der Zwaag presents over 50 XL artworks by contemporary artists and designers and will run for 10 days in what used to be the Diamant Exchange of the city. A unique mix of acclaimed names and upcoming talents, monumental paintings, drawings, large sculptures, big photos and huge installations. As one of the official partners of BIG ART we will present some of our favorite artists included in the curation of van der Zwaag. Starting with Rotterdam-based painter Katinka Lampe, with whom we discussed the democratization of the contemporary visual culture, the rise of artificial self-representation and how this is reflected back in her haunting distorted paintings of young human figures. [ Continue reading ]
Talking (sub)culture with April77 and Satisfy founder Brice Partouche
Bringing Cult into Running Culture
In 2001 Brice Partouche became a prominent name (without ever stepping into the limelight) in the so-called ‘rock era’ in fashion when he founded Paris-based jeans brand April77, which played a pinnacle role in bringing the slim silhouette in menswear from the stages of pop venues and runways to the streets of the mainstream. Last Summer, Brice presented a new project named Satisfy, this time infusing a new cultural elan into the perfect, performance orientated, world of running gear. Inspired by Partouche's new exciting endeavor, with the second collection in stores at this moment, we gave Brice a skypecall —fresh out of the shower after his evening run— to ask him about his love for running, the differences between starting a brand now and 15 years ago and what his plans are with his subversive new movement in athletic gear. [ Continue reading ]
Visiting the immaculate world of Belgian designer Michaël Verheyden
It was a very long time coming when three weeks ago we finally met one of Belgium’s most exciting contemporary designers; Michaël Verheyden, in his beautiful home on the edge of industrial city Genk, in a green area towards neighboring Hasselt. Last year, Verheyden debuted as one of the names on Wallpaper* Magazine's Power List —underlining the widespread international recognition for his work— but even before that moment we were very curious to learn more out about his creative vision, basically from the moment we discovered his work in the beginning of 2015. The first appointment we made to get together dated back to March of this year, but time after time we were forced to reschedule due to different emerging obstructing circumstances on both sides. Eventually, we got in the car and finally traveled to the Belgian province of Limburg on a Friday afternoon in the beginning of June. Right after a period of extreme rainfall, which caused a lot of problems in the North of France and different parts of Belgium.
When we arrive Michaël is still in his jackboots, having just taken care of some minor water damage in his garden shed workplace –the one for heavier work– because of that rain. It is very clear that he isn’t too impressed by the damage though. In his mellow voice, speaking in the local soft toned accent and with lively eyes behind his spectacles, he tells us: “it will be fine.” A sentiment he continues to embody throughout our conversation during and after his guided tour of the wonderful house he calls home together with his wife and business partner Saartje Vereecke. [ Continue reading ]
The new seasonal collections are one by one being released these days, and last week our good friend Olaf Hussein also presented his new set of creations. After opening his first flagship store named 'The Fitting Room' in Amsterdam last year, he continues to push the momentum he has created since the inception of the label forward. The new collection, which clearly shows the familiar minimal design elements in its overall aesthetic, allows its wearer to react and adapt to fast-paced modern life through its use of lightweight nylons, wrinkle resistant suiting fabrics, velcro straps and reversible styles. Turning novelty into a tool to express its themes, Hussein also introduces a range of bolder colors in addition to its signature grayscale palette and adapts the new moniker of “OH!” as branding, in line with current streetwear trends and possibly Acne Studios in particular as a great example of elegant implementation of this form of communication. The most striking new item of the collection is The Fundament Sneaker, the brand’s very first foray into footwear - perfectly complementing the apparel - which is available in black and white.
As has been the case for three seasons now, the majority of the just presented collection is available right away. Online, in the physical store at the Prinsengracht 491 and at the select retailers across the globe who carry the brand.
We love how Olaf relentlessly keeps building his brand and collections. To find out where he stands today, we asked him some questions what the new Spring/Summer 2016 collection means to him and how he sees the future for OLAF HUSSEIN. [ Continue reading ]
Last month, iconic Californian streetwear brand Stüssy presented its 7th seasonal Biannual — the magazine that celebrates the new upcoming collection. Where initially it stopped at being only that, over the years it has grown into a standalone publication in which the whole context around the brand is shared rather than just focusing on its own products and stories. It changed radically with Vol - 6, when the very talented Ryan Willms (of the recently stopped Inventory Magazine) took over as the editor of the magazine. Next to a new framework for the scope of the content, Willms' vision also included a new aesthetic for the publication to communicate the new ambitions for the Biannual. All of these elements put together makes the just released Vol - 7 a wonderful standout, the best they have put out so far, promising a lot for the future.
On the pages of the magazine its reader is taken to the island of Jamaica, which has been an inspiration for the brand from the very start through its rich culture, music and grounded lifestyle. On the island, photographer Tyrone Lebon shot his fourth series for Stüssy —very likely his best— exploring Jamaica’s great variety, spending time between Port Antonio and Kingston. Immersed into the Rasta, Reggae and Dancehall cultures of the island, the images convey an honest and exciting perspective of the country. Also dancehall superstar Popcaan is represented on the pages of the magazine. Next to these stories one will find enfant terrible and Bianca Chandôn mastermind Alex Olson, publisher Tom Adler (California Surfing and Climbing in the Fifties!), collage artist Tomoo Gokita, fashion designer Daiki Suzuki, and Hoffman Fabrics, alongside features photographed by James W. Mataitis Bailey, Antosh Cimoszko and Joyce Sze NG in the magazine.
To learn a little more on the interesting new creative direction for the Biannual we connected with Ryan, who in turn gave the word to the brand's in-house designer Chris Glickman, who was kind enough to answer some questions from us right before he took a trip to Japan. [ Continue reading ]
The Judgement at PLUSONE in Antwerp
It is always special to meet an artist you admire. Especially when that artist is the incredibly talented Cleon Peterson, who is one of our undisputed favorite contemporary artists - both because of his highly distinctive style and unfiltered observations on the world around us. Not to mention the turbulent life he has lived before he got where he is today. So therefore last week was an exciting moment, to say the least. In 2015 the American artist seems to indefinitely have joined those who work on a global level, having moved all over the globe for shows and projects; from Paris to Detroit, followed by Hong Kong, before setting foot in Belgium for a 5 day stay in Antwerp where we sat down for a little talk. Parallel to this development, or maybe because of this new level of worldwide interest in his work, Peterson has been stretching the scope of form he creates in, debuting in Antwerp with a life-size sculpture, next to several new paintings and a black rendition of his porcelain sculpture he created with Case Studyo, together forming the exhibition named after the large sculpture; ‚The Judgement’, presented in the last year opened PLUSONE gallery of Jason Poirier dit Caulier. [ Continue reading ]
We have been friends with Berlin-based everlasting source for inspiration Freunde von Freunden since its inception, so it was a great honor to be featured as one of their Workplaces visits in the Summer of 2014. Yesterday marked another great Freunde von Freunden moment for us, as we were very proud to see our close friend (and Tenue de Nîmes partner) Menno van Meurs as the latest addition in the series that focusses on the work environment. Shot by our friend Jordi Huisman and interviewed by CreativeMornings host Margot van der Krogt, Menno opened up both the doors of his home and the epicenter of the Tenue de Nîmes operation located in the far West of Amsterdam; sharing his passion for denim, vintage design and all those other things that get better over time, in other words: 'the good things in life'. Forming the firm fundament of Tenue, both as the shaping inspirations that have formed us and subsequently in the curation and creation of everything being released by and under the Tenue de Nîmes label. [ Continue reading ]
For the just released 12th issue of Journal de Nîmes we travelled to Antwerp to speak with retail pioneer and well-respected figure within the fashion industry: Geert Bruloot. The curator of the current shoe exhibition in the ever-inspiring MoMu has played a pinnacle role in the road to stardom of the infamous Antwerp Six, which he sold before any one else at the avant-garde designer store Louis and exclusive footwear boutique Coccodrillo. On that rainy wednesdayafternoon we sat down with him and talked about the main theme of the issue 'new vintage', the importance of the experience in a fashion store and the need for rebellion in these times of homogeneity.
— As published in Journal de Nîmes No 12 — [ Continue reading ]
Frederik Vercruysse is a very talented Antwerp-based photographer whose beautiful work we discovered some years ago. He describes his work as still life photography in the broadest sense of the word, always aiming to photograph the subject in its purest form, sometimes realistic, often minimalistic. Distinguishing features of his work are fresh, graphic images bathed in a soft light. Vercruysse has an eye for detail and a well-defined sense of aesthetics. He is an expert in creating compositions, regardless of whether he is photographing architecture, an interior or a still life. With Frederik being such an inspiration for us, we asked him about his inspirations in life. [ Continue reading ]
We have been following the very talented Japanese designer Yusuke Seki for a couple of years in which he is constantly taking his work to the next level, whether it was for the Interior Design Office in Tokyo, corporate clients such as AU or Sony, and his independent projects on design products and architectural space design, of which many have been exhibited at the Milan Salone, Designer’s block, the Tokyo Style Exhibition, Stockholm Furniture and Light Fair. After establishing his own studio in 2008, Seki has designed for a variety of spaces, from shops like his incredible design for the Kyoto-based kimono store Otsuka-Dofukuten and his work at Nakagawa Masashichi Shoten-gai, to candy stores and salons like his work for Kolmio+LIM and most recently the utterly incredible Maruhiro Flagship Store. With Seki being such an everlasting source of inspiration, we asked him what he finds inspirational in life. [ Continue reading ]
We discovered the thrilling work of the Berlin-based Croatian photographer Katja Kremenić through her incredible series ‘Rip Currents‘, after which she has been creating a body of work in her signature romantic free-floating style - both for fashion orientated clients as her personal projects in which she has explored some of the most beautiful beaches of the globe, proving to be an everlasting source of inspiration in her photography. Blending her signature aesthetic in all areas of the work she produces, the photographer excels in translating emotions into her photographs. Making the fragmentations of her unique photographic gaze images which resonate through feelings rather than just the representation. As Kremenić has been such an inspiration for us in the last few years, we asked her about her inspirations. [ Continue reading ]
The New York Times recently named him a 'Digital Tastemaker for Young Men', and although we aren't as young as we were when we discovered him through his inspirational blog 'Words for Young Men', the multitalented New York-based creative Chris Black continues to be one of the people out there we hold in the highest regard for his inspirational vision and output. Before starting his blog 'Words for Young Men', the Atlanta-born was part of the early wave of people creating campaigns for social media, leading the way in a field of practice which has slowly devaluated into a metrics-obsessed monster of mediocrity and boredom, worlds apart from the cutting edge creative thinking that dominated it in the early days. Chris himself has been doing so much more than just social media in recent years, working through his creative agency named Done To Death Projects. Next to a focus on strategy and creative direction for clients, he does whatever he feels like: from publishing books and zines with different highly talented young photographers to putting out t-shirts. With Chris being such an inspiration for us, we asked him some questions on what inspires him in life. [ Continue reading ]
With globalization of the creative industry at an all time high and digital interaction just one mouse-click away, we seem to have entered the most fruitful period ever of unlimited cross-pollination within the global creative community. From a different perspective one could argue the exact opposite by pointing out the copycat culture which has become a significant element of the digital era's zeitgeist. We try to look at it from the first angle and appreciate the worldwide exchange of ideas, inspirational collaborations and formerly unexpected joint ventures. If the new (copy enabling) preconditions make that one has to be more critical then ever to separate the wheat from the chaff, the collateral damage of the digitalization is nowhere near life-threatening for great work to be created and discovered. One of the most exciting collaborations we recently discovered comes from England, where two of our favorites: Joe Cruz and Jack Davison have found each other. Although they lived far from worlds apart before they got together, it was still the internet that opened the door for the newly created work. To learn more about the works we've asked Joe Cruz some questions on the collaboration and can only hope that this is only the start for more to come by the two talented artists. [ Continue reading ]
After premiering the first half of Ashkan Honarvar's ‘King of Worms’ last week, we now present a selection of the second half of the biggest project till date created by the Norway-based visionary. Ashkan has been producing collages for almost a decade now, both under his own name as the pseudonym Who Killed Mickey, always finding inspiration in the dark side of humanity and from the questions that rise about it. The extraordinary new project is no different; consisting of 107 collages, divided in 10 chapters with a unique aesthetic, although undeniably marked with Honarvar’s signature style. Today we ask him about that particular style and his vision, inspirations from the dark side, Jane Arden’s film ‘The Other Side of the Underneath’ and how he translated this into a major work like 'King of Worms'. [ Continue reading ]
The Amsterdam-based Raymond Lemstra has been one of our favorite Dutch artists for some years now. The creatures he creates (mostly drawn) show his interest in distortion as a result of selective emphasis; parts of interest are emphasized, unimportant parts reduced or left out. His distinct characters therefore often come out big headed, with focus on the faces and the body trimmed to its essential properties, all marked with his personal style, tough often very different in specific form. As he has stated on his vision and aesthetic: "The contrast between my naive and at the same time sophisticated approach to my work gives it a somewhat awkward taste. It is a clash of intent, simultaneously assuming simplicity and complexity, randomness and reason, flaws and perfection." We've been following Raymond since the very beginning of Another Something & Co and feel extremely grateful to have collaborated with him during the first Our Current Obsessions. Having been this inspired by his work for all this time, we now ask him about his inspirations. [ Continue reading ]
The super inspirational Mannheim-based creative studio Deutsche & Japaner was formed in 2009 by Moritz Firchow, David Wolpert, Ina Yamaguchi and Julian Zimmerman: working in the field of graphic, product and interior design with a rich and highly aesthetic style. Since their start we’ve always been a big fan of their multidisciplinary work. The studio focuses on communication, regardless of its physical condition, environmental, haptical or visual, but always in regard of sustainable experiences, which over the course of the last years resulted in incredible free work, which blends smoothly with commissioned assignments. Next to Moritz' endeavors under the Deutsche & Japaner flag, he has also been running another important source of inspiration named Arcademi; an online publication focusing on (autonomous) creative work from all over the world. To which he added two other amazing projects in 2012; Aesthetics Habitat, through which content is created in collaboration with brands and creative visionaries with thrilling results so far, and lastly in the same year he co-founded a distinguished winery named Love Me Los Angeles, together with wine-expert Katharina Riess, Florian Breimesser. Having been constantly inspired by the creative mind of Moritz, we now ask him about his - general - inspirations. [ Continue reading ]
Joe Cruz is a very talented artist, illustrator and textile designer, which we have been following since we discovered his work some years ago. In this period he has been consistently creating very strong images, distinctly using a toned down color palette and collage techniques. Joe was born in London in 1988 from a multi-cultural background: with roots in France, Spain, Austria and Morocco. He graduated from Norwich University of the Arts in 2010 with a BA in Graphic Design, specializing in Illustration after which he worked on commissions for clients such as Mary Portas, Stussy and Nokia, next to his free work which seems to have been influenced by his eclectic background in one way or the other. We were very happy to collaborate with Joe in Journal de Nîmes Nº 9, for which the artist created an extraordinary collage using vintage photographs out of the Tenue de Nîmes private collection named 'Denim Anonymous'. Having been inspired by Joe's incredible work for all this time, we now ask him what inspires him in life. [ Continue reading ]
Stockholm and Paris-based Romain Lenancker is one of those individuals who continues to inspire us with his work in art direction and set design. His portfolio has expanded progressively over the last few years, with everything he produces looking extremely impressive. His commercial work blends aesthetically perfectly with personal projects. Lenancker is an art director and set designer with an almost unparalleled eye for composition. His portfolio is living proof that it is possible to marry the needs of demanding commissions with arresting, thoughtful imagery. He’s particularly adept at using a limited colour palette to maximum effect, letting his superlative attention to detail capture and hold the viewers’ attention. He works as the Art Director of Intersection Magazine's still-life division. Over the course of the years in which Another Something & Company has been active, Romain has always been raising the bar in a very inspirational manner and therefore we've asked him what inspires him in life. [ Continue reading ]
Andy Rementer is an award winning graphic artist from USA. He grew up in a Victorian beach town where an early exposure to the sun faded, local signage educated his love of type and hand-painted lettering. A sense of timelessness and nostalgia is to be found in the world he creates. Another reoccurring theme of Rementer’s work is isolation, something he cites as an effect of his abrupt relocation to an urban environment in formative years and often depicted in his work through his characters’ underlying unease with their surrounding. He graduated from The University of the Arts in 2004. After working with Benetton's Fabrica in northern Italy, he relocated to the East Coast where he divides his time between drawing, painting, and developing his first graphic novel. His work has been featured all over the world, among them Apartamento Magazine, The New York Times, Le Monde and Creative Review. We've been following Andy for many years now and therefore asked him what inspires a bright mind like his. [ Continue reading ]
Although we celebrate his overal tasteful vision and have been following Erik Schedin since the beginning of Another Something & Company, the Swedish designer is most known for his iconic minimalist sneaker, of which the first sketch was made in his final year at Beckmans College of Design in Stockholm. Last year he, together with Comme des Garçons Shirt, celebrated the 10 year existence of his sneaker with a special edition, which recently was also released in a black colorway. But there was much more we loved in these last years, in which Erik ran one of the most exciting and elegant minimal webstores to be found on the internet. He for instance collaborated with Tegnässkidan AB to re-create their classical ski model Rajd and Schedin was the first one to reintroduce the first ever designed Gore-Tex boot, the Danner Light to the European market. We now ask Erik what has been inspirational for him in all these years in which he consistently was an inspiration for us. [ Continue reading ]