Designer Daily: Walter Van Beirendonck
Jan 23, 2012 - by Jessica Lapidos
If you've ever been inside of Walter Van Bierendonck's Paris studio, you may be more equipped to make sense of his Fall 2012 collection titled "Lust Never Sleeps". If you haven't stood witness to his collection of banners with anime versions of himself riding on rainbows, mushrooms and male nether-regions, nor his future final resting grounds of a cartoon sarcophagus and his ode to all the boys, drugs and fashion a.k.a. things he loves, this trompe-l'oeil culture clashing runway journey may blow your mind.
When I was a dresser at his Fall 2009 show, his inspiration was the Duk Duk, the symbol of a secret society in Papua New Guinea. Now focused on warriors from the same region and high priests from the Caribbean, he smashed their traditional masks with that of Jason and Western sex-fetishes. Aside from ethnic play, the juxtaposition of suits with smaller suits cartoonishly painted on proceeded by coats that actually unbutton to become smaller versions of themselves takes the collection from a cultural conundrum to a wardrobe solution.
Brief history of time: Walter Van Beirendonck was one of the Antwerp 6, a group of designers that graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium in the 80's. Also members of this game-changing Avant Garde pack were Ann Demeulemeester and Dries Van Noten. Take note.