by Zoe Aron
First SCAD FASH — and now, this: The High Museum has finally gotten on board with fashion as an art form, and is presenting its very first fashion exhibition (in over 100 years no less...), Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion. The exhibit is also the first exhibition of the Dutch designers work in the U.S. — work that includes some of the world's first examples of 3D-printed fashion. That's a lot of firsts.
Iris van Herpen has gained worldwide fame for her unique couture designs that mix conventional design and handywork with cutting edge 3D-printing technology and computer modeling. To push the limit even more, Iris van Herpen adopts unconventional and unexpected materials when creating her designs, such as magnets, synthetic boat rigging and umbrella ribs among others. This isn't your ordinary haute couture — and it would have to be beyond ordinary to be fitting for the likes of Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Bjork, music icons known for pushing the limits in the world of wearables.
The choice to display Iris van Herpen’s collection at the High Museum came as a natural progression to Sarah Schleuning, curator of decorative arts and design at the High Museum. “We’ve done exhibitions that feature contemporary work of all kinds … and we are really excited that this is showing a different kind of artistic endeavor,” Schleuning shares. “You hope people look at the vision, perseverance and ideas that she has — that you can take something as common and forgotten like an umbrella and turn it into a fabric and design that is art. That incredible alchemy of creating is what we hope transforms people’s idea of what is possible.”
Co-organized with the Groninger Museum in the Netherlands, the 45-outfit exhibit spanning over 15 of van Herpen’s collections is on display at the High Museum from November 7th, 2015 until May 15th, 2016. Visitors have the opportunity not only to visually experience the futuristic designs, but also can get hands-on with the garments and touch some of the unorthodox materials used in the apparel. In addition, designer Iris van Herpen will be discussing her designs with Eugene Rabkin, editor and creative director of StyleZeitgeist magazine, on November 7th at the Rich Theatre. Tickets are $10 and available through the Woodruff Art Centers box office.
High Museum of Art
1280 Peachtree St NE