In recent years the Netherlands’ Arnhem Mode Biennale, a conceptual fusion of fashion, art, and design, has featured installations from Prada, Rodarte, Maison Martin Margiela and Thom Browne. This June, the Biennale returns with a series of interactive exhibits, fashion films and lectures, inviting its visitors to experience all facets of fashion.
One particularly wacky facet comes from Nicholas Kirkwood and the Keith Haring Foundation’s installation, which includes a collection of nine pairs of shoes inspired by Haring in a space made to replicate his infamous Pop Shop. “This has been a passion project,” says Kirkwood. “I actually studied fine art at Central Saint Martins and the combination of fashion and art is very interesting for me. I never claim to be an artist. I’m a designer. But I think there are areas in which they can merge, and that overlap is exciting,” he adds. Using Swarovski crystals, which shimmer on a pair of thigh-high roller boots, embroidery and other unexpected materials, Kirkwood brings Haring’s work into the third dimension. Pop-y platforms and ankle boots are printed with the artist’s graffiti and a pair of sea foam pumps, as well as a set of pink-laced cutout booties, feature Haring’s primitive figures in place of heels.
In another instillation, Siki Im, an architect-turned-designer and the winner of the 2010 Ecco Domani Menswear Award, in collaboration with his former architecture firm, Architectonics, creates a futuristic structure inspired by a deconstructed blazer. “My instillation gives people a new perspective of an everyday object,” he says. “And I hope I can offer people an experience that inspires them to question their relationship towards fashion and architecture.” The designer’s multi-dimensional space will also feature his Fall/Winter 2011 film and a soundscape he created with Travis Thatcher. “I feel this space is a perfect metaphor for my brand and I’m thankful that I can express myself with different media. It’s quite liberating.”
The Arnhem Mode Biennale will run from June 1st through July 3rd. For additional information, visit arnhemmodebiennale.com