This new film highlights the influence of music on Iris Van Herpen’s work
Dec. 17, 2019
By: Emma Elizabeth Davidson
Iris Van Herpen is one of the most innovative designers around. Consistently blurring the lines between fashion, art, and technology with her wildly experimental, boundary-pushing collections, her imagination seemingly knows no bounds.
Given her propensity for innovation, it stands to reason that Van Herpen, who is based in Amsterdam, would be a fan of those similarly pushing things forward when it comes to music. Not only has she previously created looks for the likes of Lady Gaga, Solange, and Arca, but working in collaboration with partner Salvador Breed, who creates the music for each of her shows, she transports those lucky enough to have scored a ticket to her show to other worlds entirely.
Having first met when Breed, a sound artist and composer, visited her studio, the two connected straight away. When Van Herpen is working on a collection, he visits her studio to see the fabrics, watch the garments come together, and understand the themes and concepts running throughout, before beginning work on a soundscape which builds on the physical offering and extends the story itself.
In celebration of ten years of Van Herpen and Breed’s creative partnership, progressive Dutch music festival Le Guess Who? invited the two to curate their own programme of artists and installations at is 2019 event, which took place in early November. Among those they chose to spotlight were the likes of Coucou Chloe, Mykki Blanco, Holly Herndon, Lafawndah, and Amnesia Scanner. “Iris has been on our radar as a visionary thinker for a couple of years,” explains the festival’s artistic director, Bob van Heur, of the decision to offer Van Herpen this platform. “It wasn’t until her exhibition Shifting Souls, which featured a song by Low, that the idea of asking her and Salvador to curate something became a solid idea though.”
Also commissioned by Le Guess Who? was a short film in which Van Herpen and Breed discuss their respective creative practices and the ways in which they intertwine. Notably, this is the first time the two have delved into the story, and the result is an intimate snapshot of two artists bound by their mutual desire for progression and the exploration of new possibilities.
Premiering on Dazed and across its social channels today, watch the full film above and revisit Van Herpen’s AW19 Couture show below.