DRIES VAN NOTEN
GREETINGS FROM ANTWERP
MEN SS 22 COLLECTION — A COLLAGE OF ANTWERP
An emotionally charged and intimate homage to a life of carefree fun and freedom in the city.
An insistence on a return to revelry, lazy summer vibes, decadence, and freedom. A visceral outburst of energy, an expression of and response to the frustration and limitations of being stuck in Antwerp. A future life grasped and brought into the present.
A life that can be sensual, suave, and carefree. Chill yet intense, bold yet intimate and personal, audacious yet discreet.
The culturally kaleidoscopic view of one city disclosed through many intimate, rough & ready, pre-pandemic images stored in the phones of the international members of the Dries Van Noten design studio. A curated selection of these images is printed on garments as either full images or within collages (a nod to the seminal work of artists Isa Genzken and Robert Rauschenberg). Nice moments in memory become postcards of the ‘Now”.
Antwerp of the past, the now and the future. The past expressed using prints by Rubens and Breughel and the A logo for the city in the 1970s. The ‘now’ expressed through the post postcards taken of the city today, a love of the city’s architecture in all its facets, the good, the bad and the ugly. The future through the creative vision of the collection worn in situ and that expresses a vision on what life in the city will look like once the pandemic has passed.
Relaxed yet confident volumes. Ease and freedom. The linchpins of a Man’s wardrobe, from the Parka to the traditional trench, suiting (even a tuxedo) in softer forms and all with a twist for today and tomorrow. Nonchalance is underpinned by extra elongated sleeves and trouser legs. Garments in camouflage are laser cut. Aprons are superimposed on classic and ¾ leg pants. Cargo pant aprons. The backs of some garments are high and seem scooped out.
A spectrum from tender and muted to bold tones. Powdery pastels. Military Drab. Pinks, camouflage, acid to alkaline, lime, mocha, saffron, sage, slate, sky, lilac, orange, custard, fawn. Ink. aqua, olive, turquoise, salmon, peach, olive.
PRINT, PATTERNS & EMBELLISHMENT
Photo prints of personal photos from phones, used alone or as collages, images of nightlife of city nightscape. Archival etchings used with the exclusive permission of the Plantin-Moretus Museum in Antwerp. Prints by Peter Paul Rubens: “The Lion Hunt” from 1642, “The Hippopotamus and Crocodile Hunt” from 1644 and “A Waggon Fording a Stream” from 1638. Peter Breughel, “The temptation of Saint Anthony” from 1556. A medieval map of Antwerp, from the British Museum circa 1747. The “A”, a logo from the city of Antwerp from 1970 designed by J van den Bouwhuysen, becomes a geometric print.
Subjects of photos used: Ionic Antwerp cityscapes such as the cathedral and the Sint- Anna tunnel. Cranes in the loading docks of the harbour, statues in the city’s main square’s, images caught in late night clubs late at night, city nightscapes, the Ferris wheel at the harbour, views of outside captured from the Dries Van Noten atelier during day and night, office buildings, friends of the Dries Van Noten design team playing guitar or drums, relaxing by the pool.
Iridescent studs in foil and plastic, bonded to fabrics, create patterns. Scarves attached to existing garments such as a classic man’s white shirt, disrupt their allure and intent. Tropical prints and classic intarsia in knits.
A full spectrum of all fabric qualities and types of a Man’s wardrobe from the robust to the fragile, the sensible to the slinky, tailoring to workwear. Overdyed cotton’s, fragile and translucent silks, suave luxury suiting fabrics silk lingerie viscose twill laser cut polyester overdyed satins. Military grade technical fabrics such as fully reflective camouflage. Printed denim, sports mesh, classic shirting poplins, sheer silk.
Extra big carrier bags in leather or faux brown paper are in strong solid colours or printed with Ruben’s prints. Footwear ranges from a new square nose sneaker, sliders, and “puffy” sandals to a hybrid of a sandal and clog, moccasins in soft suede a khaki loafer and the boat shoe. Belt buckles are lacquered to match the belt’s leather, and enamel ‘pearls’ in strong pastel colours hang on fine chains or as earrings. Classic shoes are mounted on deep waffle like soles. Big cat eye sunglasses.
Postcards of the city. A look book in movement across the town and collection. Over three days a podium was carried to 56 iconic places around the city of Antwerp where looks of the collection were shot, as still and moving images, on men and women and in unison with their surroundings. Photography by Sofie & Maarten.
The video plays to the sound of Primal Scream’s iconic “Loaded”. At the start of the song, Weatherall added an audio sample of Frank Maxwell and Peter Fonda from the film The Wild Angels.
QUOTES FROM DRIES VAN NOTEN
“Lock down was hard on all of us and especially when I started to design this collection with my team as it was very restrictive and frustrating. We all yearned for a time when our lives were more free. We found ourselves almost bursting out and going through photos on our phones, needing to relive memories of moments when life was carefree and sociability possible. And so the idea was born…. Bring these moments to life again though wearing them… Anticipate the future we will all certainly enjoy together again by celebrating such moments already lived now!”
“I have always loved my life in Antwerp and enjoyed my choice to base my company in this city. Through my work here I have had the pleasure of reliving Antwerp over again through the lives of the International members of my team who have come to live here with us. With this collection we see Antwerp through the eyes and photographs of international residents of the city, members of my design team. It is always interesting to see what captivates their attention and how the city we know speaks to them.”
All images courtesy of Dries Van Noten
photographer Sofie Middernacht and Maarten Alexander