Fashion as Art as Fantasy
April 13, 2017
Finding the beauty in ugliness with emerging designer Marlou Breuls
Marlou Backstage at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Amsterdam 2017
It's been long debated whether art is fashion or fashion is art, but in the worlds of visionaries like Alexander McQueen and Rei Kawakubo, the catwalk is a crossroads of sartorial and artistic exploration. Marlou Breuls, one of Amsterdam’s rising design talents, is answering the question in her own way. She considers “ugliness an essential ingredient to beauty”, and with her first three collections: Individuals; The Absurdist; and The (Non-) Conformist: her appreciation of anomalies is clear. Telling stories with texture, color, and silhouettes, her creations are more like sculptures than fashion designs. In fact, she never lets “wearability or functionality prevent her from creating something nearly impossible”; if she can dream it she’ll design it.
“When I see something shocking, ugly or scary I get excited. I love finding my own beauty in an imperfect thing or moment. Ugliness does something with people. Most of them look away, but literally everybody feels the urge to look again. That’s what I try to capture with my designs” - Marlou Breuls
Marlou Breuls The (Non-) Conformist Collection 2017
From a white bodysuit of pearl cording and ruffled silk in homage to Van Gogh, to a red renaissance rug molded into a corset dress, Marlou’s designs blur the traditional lines of canvas, sculpture, and model. Her models' faces are often covered by a masked garment or painted to blend into the work; in essence she decorates them with her story. Inviting people to “fall in love again with fashion, similarly to a painting or a sculpture that bewitches you with their endless details”, her creations are poetically enchanting. So much so that Bjork, the epitome of “living as an art piece” has worn two of Marlou’s runway looks. In an increasingly commercial industry of fast fashion and disposable designs, its young minds like Marlou that preserve the tradition of fashion as an art form and canvas of creativity.
Marlou Breuls Fashion Film "The Painting" by Studio Selvedge
“For me fashion and art are inseparable. All artists try to capture memories and emotions. I find it intriguing how an artist can grasp your attention and trigger your fantasies. Fashion or art unfolds itself when people can relate to it. When people recognize my inspiration without prior explanations I have reached my ultimate goal.” - Marlou Breuls
Wanna learn more about Marlou? Check her out at marloubreuls.com