ANTWERP, Mar 2, 2009 / FW/ — In cooperation with the MoMu – Fashion Museum Province of Antwerp, Tokyo Opera City Cultural Foundation is organizing the exhibition ‘6+. Antwerp Fashion’ in the Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery.
‘6+. Antwerp Fashion’ originally took place from January till June 2007 at ‘De Loketten’ and was initiated by the Flemish Parliament in Brussels. From 11 April through 28 June, this exhibition travels to Japan, where it will be officially opened on April 10th, 2009. For the exhibition in Tokyo, a team from the MoMu – Fashion Museum will travel to Japan in order to set up the exhibition together with Geert Bruloot, who will once again serve as guest curator and scenographer.
6+, referring to ‘The Six of Antwerp’, describes the international success story of Antwerp fashion. ‘The Six’ — Ann Demeulemeester, Dries Van Noten, Walter Van Beirendonck, Dirk Van Saene, Dirk Bikkembergs and Marina Yee — have been well-known in the world of fashion since the beginning of the 80s.
This group name, launched by British journalists, is a mixed blessing. However, the name goes beyond the identity of each of the designers and beyond the evolution the Antwerp fashion has been going through since the end of the 80s.
Seldom has the story of these designers had such a broad framework. The exhibition’s aim is to place Antwerp fashion and the designers schooled there in a wider historic and artistic context. The plus sign in the title refers to Martin Margiela on the one hand, because he is often bracketed together with ‘The Six’ and on the other hand to the next generation of designers who have always added new aspects to the Antwerp identity.
The exhibition consists of three parts. The first part deals with the Fashion Department (Royal Academy of Fine Arts – Artesis Hogeschool Antwerpen). Unique photos and video footage show the transformation from a local drawing department — inspired by Paris — towards an internationally renowned fashion academy.
With work by the students of the Fashion Department: Jinseng Lee, Karisia Paponi, Antonin Tron, Tugce Özocak, Ken Combrez, Marianne Host, Emilie Pierlot, Lion Blau, Senne Huveneers, Alexandra Verschueren, Charlotte Pringels, Laurence Bruyninckx.
The second part tackles the 6+, ‘The Six’ and Martin Margiela, their joint ambition and development and finally the crucial turning point: the Golden Spindle competitions. With work by Ann Demeulemeester, Maison Martin Margiela, Dries Van Noten, Marina Yee, Dirk Bikkembergs, Dirk Van Saene, Walter Van Beirendonck.
The third chapter shows ‘The New Generation’: the ‘second wave’ of internationally renowned Antwerp designers. With work by Bernhard Willhelm, Raf Simons, Patrick Van Ommeslaeghe, Kris Van Assche, Haider Ackermann, Les Hommes, Lieve Van Gorp, Bruno Pieters, Peter Pilotto, Veronique Branquinho, Jurgi Persoons, A.F. Vandevorst.
AT TOKYO OPERA CITY ART GALLERY
11 APRIL – 28 JUNE 2009