Antwerp’s MoMu Takes Over City to Celebrate Reopening – WWD

ANTWERP, Belgium  — “It’s the challenge of a lifetime — hopefully,” mentioned Kaat Debo, chief curator and director of MoMu, Trend Museum Antwerp, outlining the modifications completed to the Belgian establishment since 2018 forward of its public reopening on Sept. 4.

These modifications embody wider circulation areas, notably the doorway; the addition of an auditorium; the renovation of the Dries van Noten research library on the second flooring, which now features a research assortment stuffed with examples of workmanship and confection particulars, and most significantly, a everlasting exhibition area to showcase the MoMu’s 35,000-piece archive of Belgian trend, the biggest on the planet.

Beforehand, the museum had solely placed on non permanent exhibitions and would shutter throughout set up occasions. “That amounted to about three months a yr,” Debo mentioned. “Not supreme from a footfall perspective.”

In whole, a further 800 sq. meters of public areas embody a café operated by native idea store-cum-eatery Graanmarkt 13 and a shop that includes objects in collaboration with native design expertise, like leather-based clutches by historic Belgian leather-based items home Delvaux and jazzed up by the likes of knitwear label Meryll Rogge or buzzy costume makers Bernadette.

Behind the scenes, the MoMu fully reorganized its archives, with 80 p.c of its storage capability in exterior places. “We determined to [repatriate into the museum] essentially the most fragile items, primarily plastics and man-made fibers,” she mentioned.

Financed by the town of Antwerp, the VisitFlanders tourism board and the province of Antwerp, the renovation was completed by native structure follow B-Architecten, who took cues from the constructing’s unique construction designed by architect Marie-José Van Hee.

To rejoice its reopening, the museum programmed three exhibitions, as a part of its “Trend 2.021 Antwerp – Trend/Acutely aware” opening cycle, which runs till January 2022. Its overarching theme is the worldwide transition, shifts throughout the world of trend and the final reset inside trend that was accelerated by a interval of worldwide disaster, starting in 2020.

On the bottom flooring, the everlasting assortment took the form of an yearly rotating choice grouped round varied themes related to Belgian creation and design, similar to deconstruction, chintz, surrealism or the work of little-known avant-garde Nineteen Sixties designer Ann Salens. Among the many highlights of this was a 15-minute documentary on the origins of the moniker “Belgian trend,” beginning with the rise of the “Antwerp Six.”

(The Antwerp Six included Dries Van Noten, Ann Demeulemeester, Dirk Van Saene, Marina Yee, Walter Van Beirendonck and Dirk Bikkembergs — all alumni of the town’s Royal Academy of Fantastic Arts, and had been thought of trend’s subsequent radical wave.)

“The previous three a long time, we noticed an incredible globalization which implies that in the present day, ‘Belgian trend’ is extra a sensibility or a top quality label than [an indicator of] the place a designer is born, raised or educated,” mentioned Debo, introducing Elisa De Wyngaert who co-curated the ‘E/Movement. Trend in Transition’ exhibition on the primary flooring.

Utilizing images, movies and dwell performances alongside trend objects, the exhibition explores questions similar to the feminine physique, the Sept. 11 terror assaults and varied crises from AIDS and COVID-19 to the local weather emergency and trend’s affect.

A 3rd exhibition, titled “P.Lace.S” is scheduled to run from Sept. 25 to Jan. 2, 2022. Taking the format of a circuit via the city’s lace-related places, it’s going to spotlight the historical past of lace in Antwerp with a selected give attention to the place of girls, who weren’t simply producers however held positions of energy, operating from the late Renaissance to the fashionable age and the experimentation of designers Iris van Herpen, Azzedine Alaïa, Prada, Chanel and Louis Vuitton.

On the invitation of the town’s governing physique, the museum additionally expanded past its partitions in a city-wide occasion, with occasions and installations all through the town, from pictures that includes the works of Walter Van Beirendonck, Raf Simons, Glenn Martens, Marine Serre, Botter and Supriya Lele; to the “Trend Balls,” large spheres that guests can climb into, making it appear to be they’re sporting the spheres.

A statue of the Madonna, housed within the metropolis’s Cathedral of Our Girl, obtained a brand new robe, designed by Belgian couture house Natan’s inventive director Edouard Vermeulen — a earlier outfit had been designed by Ann Demeulemeester. | Antwerp’s MoMu Takes Over Metropolis to Rejoice Reopening – WWD


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