Europeana fashion

Wikimania 2014 in London

Gabrielle de Pooter went to London to speak about MoMu’s experience with creating open access to its collections.  Photo: Gabrielle de Pooter. CC-BY-SA 2.0.

Gabrielle de Pooter went to London to speak about MoMu’s experience with creating open access to its collections. Photo: Gabrielle de Pooter. CC-BY-SA 2.0.

Last week, MoMu was represented at the annual Wikimedia conference at The Barbican in London. Wikimedia is dedicated to making knowledge and media freely available for everyone and therefore works closely with museums, like MoMu, asking them to make their collections available online so people can see, learn and get creative with the collections.

MoMu is strongly committed to giving people access to its collections online. The MoMu collection can be browsed via Open Fashion and there are 10.000s of MoMu objects in the online fashion portal Europeana Fashion. MoMu has also made first steps to make images of the collection available on Wikimedia so people can illustrate their fashion articles on Wikipedia.

Last year, MoMu organised an edit-a-thon, inviting people to use the images of the collection to write articles about fashion on Wikipedia. This edit-a-thon was one in a series of edit-a-thons at fashion institutions around Europe coordinated by Europeana Fashion. Organising this edit-a-thon and being part of Europeana Fashion is an on-going and instructive process for the museum to explore the best ways of opening up the collection online.

Preparing the panel. Photo: Sebastiaan ter Burg. CC-BY 2.0. (link: https://secure.flickr.com/photos/ter-burg/14858374004/in/set-72157645849424200/)

Preparing the panel. Photo: Sebastiaan ter Burg. CC-BY 2.0. (link: https://secure.flickr.com/photos/ter-burg/14858374004/in/set-72157645849424200/)

Naturally, MoMu was glad to share and exchange its experiences with other museums and the Wikimedia community from all over the world during a panel especially dedicated to the topic of enhancing open access to digital fashion content. Other participants in the panel were representatives from the Netherlands Institute for Sound & Vision, Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Wikimedia Sweden, Wikimedia Italy and Wikimedia Israel.

Event, Exhibition, Press&PR

Birds of Paradise closing event with Kate MccGwire

Cleave, mixed media with crow feathers, Kate McGwire, 2012, Photo: Tessa Angus.

Cleave, mixed media with crow feathers, Kate McGwire, 2012, Photo: Tessa Angus.

Especially for MoMu+Friends, the friends organization of our museum, we will be organizing an exclusive closing event of our Birds of Paradise. Plumes and Feathers in Fashion exhibition on Saturday 23 August.

During the event, MoMu+Friends members will receive a special tour by renowned British artist Kate MccGwire whose work is on display in the exhibition. The feathered silhouettes of the exhibition interspersed with the artist’s beautiful and haunting pieces provide a captivating backdrop for a personal tour by the artist during which she will talk about her work. For more information on Kate MccGwire’s work, see this post. The event is also a last chance to see the exhibition with a regular guide for those who did not yet see the exhibition or for anyone who wants so see it again!

Kate MccGwire from MoMu Fashion Museum Antwerp on Vimeo.

Click here for more information on how to join! MoMu+Friends get access to exclusive events like these and more.

Event, Exhibition

Frame Me at Musemnight 2014

Cardboard fans for Museumnight 2014 at MoMu - Fashion Museum Antwerp

Cardboard fans for Museumnight 2014 at MoMu – Fashion Museum Antwerp

Discover your inner Zizi Jeanmaire with these two cardboard fans from the Birds of Paradise expo during MuseumNight this Saturday at MoMu and get your picture taken with the feather fans at the FrameMe photo boot!
All pictures will be posted on the MoMu Facebook page!

Collection, Event

MoMu 10 by Michaël Smits

MuseumNacht_07

For the 10th anniversary of Museumnacht tomorrow, MoMu selected 10 silhouettes of designers that play a significant role in the museum collection. Antwerp photographer and artist Michaël Smits was asked to create a digital interpretation of these silhouettes, featuring silhouettes by Veronique Branquinho, Peter Pilotto, Rochas by Olivier Theyskens, Haider Ackermann, Christian Wijnants, Bernhard Willhelm, Raf Simons, Bruno Pieters, Minju Kim and A.F. Vandevorst!

Collection

New shoe donations from Coccodrillo!

Boxes of the new Coccodrillo donations to the MoMu - Fashion Museum Antwerp collection.

Boxes of the new Coccodrillo donations to the MoMu – Fashion Museum Antwerp collection.

The MoMu collection consists of approx. 25,000 objects, mainly clothing and accessories, 7,000 of which have been added over the past five years thanks to new purchases, donations and long-term loans.

This afternoon we received a new donation of shoes and hats of fashion enthousiasts Geert Bruloot and Eddy Michiels from Coccodrillo! Here is a highlight of the new acquisitions that will now be included in our MoMu Collection!

Dior by Raf Simons, A/W 2013-14, Evening shoe in woven fabric and print designed in collaboration with Sterling Ruby. Photo: Danique Klijs

Dior by Raf Simons, A/W 2013-14, Evening shoe in woven fabric and print designed in collaboration with Sterling Ruby. Photo: Danique Klijs

Dior by Raf Simons, A/W 2013-14, Evening shoe in woven fabric and print designed in collaboration with Sterling Ruby.

Saint Laurent, A/W 2013-14, limited edition roller skates designed by Hedi Slimane. Photo: Danique Klijs

Saint Laurent, A/W 2013-14, limited edition roller skates designed by Hedi Slimane. Photo: Danique Klijs

Saint Laurent, A/W 2013-14, limited edition roller skates designed by Hedi Slimane, a classic Saint Laurent leather sneaker is put on Krypto Impulse wheels.

Raf Simons x adidas originals, S/S 2014, Response Trail sneaker. Photo: Danique Klijs

Raf Simons x adidas originals, S/S 2014, Response Trail sneaker. Photo: Danique Klijs

Raf Simons x adidas originals, S/S 2014, Response Trail, a futuristic set of shoes with bold Lego-like colors and sneaker in sneaker build with two plastic heel straps.

Paco Rabanne, S/S 2014, silver open toe pump. Photo: Danique Klijsters

Paco Rabanne, S/S 2014, silver open toe pump. Photo: Danique Klijsters

Paco Rabanne, S/S 2014, silver open toe pump.

Stephen Jones ‘Sun’, gold straw beret from the S/S2013 collection ‘West’, Photo: Danique Klijs

Stephen Jones ‘Sun’, gold straw beret from the S/S2013 collection ‘West’, Photo: Danique Klijs

Stephen Jones ‘Sun’, gold straw beret from the S/S2013 collection ‘West’. Did you know that MoMu has about one hundred and forty hats by the London hatter Stephen Jones through a long-term loan from Geert and Eddy, who started to collect Stephen Jones hats since the beginning of their career. In 2010-11 MoMu also devoted a solo exhibition to Stephen Jones.

Exhibition

Maison Lemarié and the art of the plumassier

Plumassières at work in the ateliers of Maison Lemarié, working on a creation with duck feathers for Chanel Haute Couture S/S 2014, (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié Paris

Plumassières at work in the ateliers of Maison Lemarié, working on a creation with duck feathers for Chanel Haute Couture S/S 2014, (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Dating back to the 17th and 18th century the craft of processing feathers in Paris was limited to the feather workers or plumassiers who had their own Guild. An apprentice had to work in the business for six years and produce a masterpiece before he could become a master.

Appliqué flower motifs of partridge and pheasant feathers (Lady Amethyst), created by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié Paris

Appliqué flower motifs of partridge and pheasant feathers (Lady Amethyst), created by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié Paris

Application of goose quips, Maison Lemarié Paris, (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié Paris

Application of goose quips, Miason Lemarié Paris, (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié Paris

The plumassier was considered to be a craftsman who used raw materials in an object or fashion accessory. The first step was to clean the feathers – using soap or another detergent such as clay. After the feathers had dried they were sorted and, if necessary, dyed or bleached. Because feathers consist of protein (keratin) they are easy to dye with a natural dye using the same technique that is used for wool and silk.

Abstract composition of goose, ostrich, cock and chicken feathers by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Abstract composition of goose, ostrich, cock and chicken feathers by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Abstract motif with goose feathers and printing ink, created for the 2013 Chanel Cruise Collection by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Abstract motif with goose feathers and printing ink, created for the 2013 Chanel Cruise Collection by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Abstract motif with goose, silver pheasant and cock feathers, created by Maison Lemarié for Chanel Haute Couture A/W 2013-14 (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Abstract motif with goose, silver pheasant and cock feathers, created by Maison Lemarié for Chanel Haute Couture A/W 2013-14 (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

The most common species that were used were ostrich, peacock and heron. Ostrich feathers used to be extremely expensive, but in the 19th century the number of peacocks increased spectacularly – peaking at the beginning of the 20th century. Most ostrich feathers came from ostrich farms in South Africa. Since the second half of the 19th century increasingly more bird species were used, both European ones and the more exotic species. London was the capital of the feather trade.

Appliqué flower motif of chicken and pheasant feathers (Lady Amethyst), created by Maison Lemarié, Paris for Christian Dior Haute Couture A/W 2013-14 (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Appliqué flower motif of chicken and pheasant feathers (Lady Amethyst), created by Maison Lemarié, Paris for Christian Dior Haute Couture A/W 2013-14 (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Appliqué flower motif of cock, goose, ostrich and chicken feathers created by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Appliqué flower motif of cock, goose, ostrich and chicken feathers created by Maison Lemarié, Paris (c) Vincent Lappartient for Maison Lemarié, Paris

Paris formed and still forms the bulwark of feather processing. Here you can also find the Maison Lemarié. Maison Lemarié, founded in Paris in 1880 that make feather creations for numerous top Haute Couture collections. Maison Lemarié specializes in processing and applying feathers and creating artificial flowers and has opened its doors exclusively for the exhibition Birds of Paradise with exclusive shots of the atelier and exquisite samples of feather work testify to the magnificent mastery of this house and to the virtuosity of its plumassiers. In some abstract patterns and applications feathers are unrecognizable. This demonstrates the high level of technical expertise and the innovative methods used to process feathers.

Event, Exhibition, Press&PR

Museumnight 2014 at MoMu

Postermuseumnacht

On Saturday August 2nd, Museumnacht returns to Antwerp for its 10th edition. A successful decade of Museumnacht certainly asks for a celebration: for the occasion, the 17 participating museums add a festive element to their programme, and invite you to join in on this night of celebration!

Between 19h00 and 01h00, the museums in Antwerp open their doors and provide you with an interesting mix of activities alongside their permanent and temporary exhibitions: nightly tours, music and dance performances, slam poetry, photoshoots, activities for children, film screenings, and of course some drinks and eats to keep you going. Not tired yet at 01h00? The Museumnacht afterparty will keep you dancing until 04h00.

At MoMu you can visit the temporary exhibition Birds of Paradise. Plumes and Feathers in Fashion. Immerse yourself into the luxurious world of the elegant and delicate plumes and feathers. For the 10th anniversary of Museumnacht, MoMu also selected 10 silhouettes of designers that play a significant role in the museum collection. Antwerp photographer and artist Michaël Smits was asked to create a digital interpretation of these silhouettes, resulting in 10 colorful images that will be shown in the entrance hall of the museum. Here’s a preview!

MuseumNacht_02

From 19h until 21h, MoMu also installs a workshop table for the little ones, and from 19h until 22h, you can get your picture taken at the FrameMe photobooth, an initiative of AmuseeVous that lets you interact with a selected piece of art at each participating museum. For this photobooth, MoMu selected two fans currently on display in the exhibition. Discover your inner Zizi Jeanmaire and pose with a cardboard reproduction of the fans, while taking inspiration from Jeanmaire’s performance Mon Truc en Plumes. Lastly, the pop-up cocktailbar provides you with the necessary alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.

All you need to do is get yourself a Museumnacht wristband. This wristband serves as an entrance ticket for all 17 museums, and allows you onto the Museumnacht busses. For more information, visit www.museumnacht.be.

Exhibition

Yves Saint Laurent and feathers

Group of silhouettes by Yves Saint Laurent at the Birds of Paradise expo MoMu Antwerp, Photo: Monica Ho

Group of silhouettes by Yves Saint Laurent at the Birds of Paradise expo MoMu Antwerp, Photo: Monica Ho

The exhibition Birds of Paradise concludes with a group of silhouettes created by one of the most important designers of the 20th century: Yves Saint Laurent. The way Saint Laurent used feathers marked a new era in the 1960s. Moreover, the silhouettes demonstrate that he continued to use feathers until his career ended in the 2000s.

Sketch of Zizi Jeanmaire by Yves Saint Laurent

Sketch of Zizi Jeanmaire by Yves Saint Laurent

His meeting with dancer Zizi Jeanmaire inspired him to use feathers for theatre and dance costumes, such as the huge ostrich feather fan in combination with a black V-necked sweater in Zizi’s famous act ‘Mon Truc en Plumes’ from 1961.

Yves Saint Laurent not only marked the emancipation of women (e.g. his smoking for women), but also of the feather. It left the ornamental register and has gone on to cover the entire body and fly around like an irresistible cloud. Just like in the 1920s, the 1960s stand for freedom, and women’s liberation. The clothes are loosened from the body and it is freed of every form of limitation. The feather emphasizes this simplification as a prefect symbol of lightness. A feather cape by Yves Saint Laurent, that he created later on in his career, suggests the disruptive image of an eagle with its wings folded. It is the personification of the allegory of the bird-woman: elusive, flighty, incomprehensible and mysterious.

Collection, Exhibition, Press&PR

From September 25th, exhibition MoMu Now

Jil Sander Spring-Summer 2011, Image: Patrick Demarchelier/ Vogue © The Condé Nast Publications Ltd., Graphic Design: Paul Boudens

Jil Sander Spring-Summer 2011, Image: Patrick Demarchelier/ Vogue © The Condé Nast Publications Ltd., Graphic Design: Paul Boudens

MoMu Now: Contemporary Fashion from the MoMu collection, from 25/09/2014 to 4/01/2015, is a selection of masterpieces from the recent acquisitions of contemporary silhouettes to the MoMu collection. The MoMu collection consists of approx. 25,000 objects, mainly clothing and accessories, 7,000 of which have been added over the past five years thanks to new purchases, donations and long-term loans. In addition to historic pieces, MoMu’s acquisition policy primarily focuses on purchasing pieces by contemporary Belgian designers whose silhouettes are examples of excellent craftsmanship, bold concepts and avant-garde shapes. All these elements are part of the central theme of MoMu Now.

Haider Ackermann H/W 2011-2012, Photo: Stephen Mattues.

Haider Ackermann H/W 2011-2012, Photo: Stephen Mattues.

This selection of the collection includes notable names from the Belgian fashion scene such as Raf Simons, Haider Ackermann, Walter van Beierendonck, Veronique Branquinho, AF Vandevorst and Ann Demeulemeester, but also younger talents such as Christian Wijnants and Peter Pilotto standing alongside silhouettes donated by Belgian houses (like Delvaux) and major foreign fashion houses (including Balenciaga, Helmut Lang).

Dior by Raf Simons S/S 2013, Photo: Stephen Mattues.

Dior by Raf Simons S/S 2013, Photo: Stephen Mattues.

As a result of MoMu’s growing international network, there have been donations from international fashion houses and long-term loans from iconic Antwerp individuals and private collections. Certain important silhouettes were acquired, including those from Raf Simons for the French fashion house Christian Dior, through the museum’s new circle of friends. The exposition will not only focus on Raf Simons’ menswear, but also on his work for houses like Jil Sander and Christian Dior. MoMu acquired quite a few pieces from Raf Simons’ archives and by purchasing new silhouettes every season. His craftsmanship and the artistic codes of his work are emphasized by exhibiting a combination of his work for various audiences (men, women, couture and ready-to-wear).

Jil Sander by Raf Simons A/W 2009-2010, Photo: Willy Vanderperre

Jil Sander by Raf Simons A/W 2009-2010, Photo: Willy Vanderperre

Exhibition

Thierry Mugler at Birds of Paradise

Opening gown of the expo Birds of Paradise by Thierry Mugler at MoMu Fashion Museum Antwerp, Photo: Boy Kortekaas

Opening gown of the expo Birds of Paradise by Thierry Mugler at MoMu Fashion Museum Antwerp, Photo: Boy Kortekaas

The opening gown of this exhibition was designed by Thierry Mugler. A velvet dress with trompe-l’oeil butterfly pattern in the back cut-out, made by Maison Lemarié with peacock feathers, rooster feathers, eagle feathers and feathers from a bird of paradise. A huge butterfly is suggested by means of feathers in the open back of the dress. This way, a link is created between the butterfly, woman and bird in a surreal creation that emphasises the woman’s uniqueness and exotic nature. She herself is thus presented as a bird of paradise.

Thierry Mugler, Haute Couture S/S 1997, Photo: Patrice Stable, Photo origin: http://regina.guerreiro.blog.uol.com.br/images/pass02.jpg

Thierry Mugler, Haute Couture S/S 1997, Photo: Patrice Stable, Photo origin: http://regina.guerreiro.blog.uol.com.br/images/pass02.jpg

The image of the ‘femme oiseau’ (bird woman) has been a popular theme ever since the era of Romanticism. In those days, women were compared to birds, the symbol of innocence and lightness. In this case, however, it looks more like a seductive femme fatale due to the exotic and bold plumage.

The gown is called Métamorphose d’une chrysalids en femme papillon and was shown by model Simonetta Gianfelici during the finale at Mugler’s Haute Couture show of Spring-Summer of 1997, presenting feathered creations inspired by butterflies and surreal dragonflies.