EINDHOVEN – Packed with fiercely fresh talent, the Modebelofte annual exhibition transforms the third floor of De Bijenkorf at Dutch Design Week, with innovative fashions. Curated by Niek Pulles and Harm Rensink with graphic design courtesy of Studio&, the event displays the works of 30 international BA and MA graduates that seek to break the status-quo of the industry, as well as stimulate interdisciplinary collaborations. This year’s concept – Adaptive Travelers – transforms the luxury department store’s shop windows, as well as its rooftop, into a mysterious aircraft runway cloaked in black.
Max Luo from China, recent graduate of Central Saint Martins, experiments with an intriguing juxtaposition of female cyborgs with stereotypical human mannerisms. The highly erotic details are intended to pose questions such as how they would act if they had emotions? Would they choose to blend in with humans by dressing alike, or would they stay true to their cold, robotic and metallic appearance? Luo created each design with seduction in mind, which can be seen in the metallic skin tone and aesthetic of the body suit.
Max Luo (China), Central Saint Martins, Fashion Print BA 2016
Elsewhere in the exhibition, Liya Liu strives to conquer the fashion industry’s link to waste. She reconceptualises everyday materials found on the street such as trash bags into wearable, artistic garments – essentially creating a camouflage for the wearer to merge into its urban landscape. The theme of ‘no waste’ is carried throughout the entire body of her collection, for example excess cuts are reapplied as embroidered elements.
Johannes Offerhaus, Dutch fashion graduate of Artez, seeks to cancel out gravity with centrifugal force for his collection. By designing a turning belt system with which the light fabric, in this case the full skirt, is connected with rope constructions to be suspended in mid-air as it propels around the body.
Johannes Offerhaus (the Netherlands), Artez, Fashion BA 2016
An additional theme explored within the exhibition is gender roles. A clear example of this is Eline Groendijk’s graduation collection: Boys Be Boys. Her design inspiration stemmed from studying the way in which boys from 7 to 10 years of age drape sportswear items and classic menswear jackets over themselves, resulting in exaggerated volumes and unique proportions. By combining digital and manual techniques her sporty choice of materials come to life.
The exhibition is open until 30 October at De Bijenkorf, Eindhoven at DDW 2016.
Photos GJ van Rooj