Van Noten's Inspiration

Yes, fashion is oriented to the passing seasons and consequently subject to constant change. And yes, art defines itself as precisely the opposite, as directed to the eternal and the immortal. But this doesn't mean that art can't define fashion. That's why we regularly see reinterpretation of artworks on the runway. As literal as YSL's Mondriaan dresses or a subtle as Dries Van Noten's inspiration.

For his SS 09 and SS 11 collection, Dries searched inspiration in the artworks of two fellow Belgians: sculptor Pol Bury and painter Jef Verheyen. It immediately seemed an I Love Belgium worthy topic!

Let's hit it off with the work of Pol Bury. Although he started out as a painter, working in the famous Cobra group, he started taking up sculptures in 1953. At the time Bury was one of the leading artist of the Kinetic sculpture movement.  Most of his monumental and public artwork consists of stainless steel, grouped, monumental balls. The fountain in the garden of the Palais Royal in Paris, resembling a smattering of large silver beads, was reflected as a motif in Van Noten's spring/summer 2009 brass necklaces, shoe decoration, rings and bracelets.

2 years later, spring/summer Dries went a step further. As he really wanted to catch the light, dries looked into the work of  artist Jef Verheyen, whose haunting works interpret ideas of light, color, and landscape through abstract visual language.  Jef Verheyen, believed that it wasn’t enough to ‘see’ art, but that we should  “feel it with our eyes”. The oeuvre of this artist’s work exist out of an extensive explorations into colour.

Dries Van Noten – like Verheyen, also from Antwerp - rendered  the artist’s ability to capture light on canvas perfectly. Chiffon layers were pinned to utilitarian white shirts, like an aquerelle glaze sitting fresh on dry canvas. Whilst oversized boyfriend jackets, dip dyed paper trousers & trenches saw the  masculinity and conceptualism of the 1990’s, washed in an intelligent elegance.  Dries Van Noten’s pieces spoke of Verheyen, so directly, that they even resembled specific canvases: his hot ink dip dyed jackets a dedication to the artist’s abstract Brasille skyscapes.

Who knows, maybe spring summer 2013 will be inspired by Bob Verschueren's wind paintings (At least, if Dries is an I Love Belgian fan).

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