In the autumn of 2011, the Antwerp Fashion Museum will present the first large-scale retrospective exhibition of the work of fashion designer WALTER VAN BEIRENDONCK.
Over three decades, Van Beirendonck has built up an impressive international career. He is the maverick of the Antwerp fashion scene and became primarily known for his colourful designs, his spectacular fashion shows in Paris in the 1990s under the W.&L.T. label, and the critical messages on society he proclaims in his designs. His work combines the most diverse sources of inspiration, ranging from technology, art and pop culture to ethnography.
In addition to many of the most exceptional silhouettes from Van Beirendonck’s collections, the exhibition provides an overview of the world he lives in, his sources of inspiration and his numerous other projects. By way of different themes, it takes a deeper look into the narrative character of his oeuvre, his fascination for ethnography, spiritualism and the supernatural, rituals, science fiction and technology.
The exhibition reveals how Van Beirendonck examines the frontiers of beauty, creating his own interpretations of concepts imposed by society, for example, in terms of gender and sexuality, and how he incorporates topical themes, including ecology, Aids or mass consumerism into his collections and presentations. The exhibition also investigates the diverse projects beyond the catwalk, in which Walter van Beirendonck has participated, with special focus on his costumes for the U2 PopMart tour in 1997. Walter van Beirendonck has moreover collaborated with fashion photographer Nick Knight/SHOWstudio.com, stylist Simon Foxton and GQ Style UK to develop a new photography and video project created especially for this exhibition.
Hardcover, 240 pages, €55
Lannoo, Dutch version ISBN 978 90 209 6096 9
Lannoo, English version ISBN 978 90 209 6112 6
An overview of the creative work of Walter Van Beirendonck over the last 30 years, during which he has built a completely unique world, averse to fashion evolutions, trends and commercial considerations.
A richly illustrated book, including extensive photography by Nick Knight, Juergen Teller, Ronald Stoops, Willy Vanderperre, Anton Corbijn, David Bailey,
Jean-Baptiste Mondino and Elisabeth Broekaert. With a preface by Christian Lacroix and with texts by Tim Blanks, Hettie Judah, Cornelia Lauf, Robyn Healy, Valerie Steele, Hugo DeBlock and Kaat Debo.