Orlando Went To Antwerp
CALLING ANTWERP, WE HAVE A SEVENTH
Fashion and creativity seems ingrained in the psyche of Antwerp. Year after year, since the 80's and the Antwerp Six, the city has given birth to countless talented designers, but it also nurtures those who come to the city seeking to express those ideals.
The Royal Academy of Fine Arts has thrust forward so many highly conceptual designers, creating an avant garde lexicon that has helped shape the fashion landscape.
Flying the flag for this alt language is Linus Leonardsson.
Hailing from Stockholm but currently based in Antwerp, Leonardsson is currently studying at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp, preparing to start his third and last year of the bachelor programme.
He recently debuted his first capsule collection, entitled ORLANDO.
This collection is based on the story of Orlando by Virginia Woolf. Its protagonist is a young, English nobleman in the 17th century who's enchanted by the queen to live forever young. Orlando one day wakes up as a woman and because of the laws at the time, he lost everything he owned and goes from a wealthy man of power to a woman without any possessions at all.
"The book ends in the 1930's, but with this collection, I'm bringing Orlando into modern days, in the same state of being as s/he was when the story by Virginia Woolf ends - that being poor in some London suburb. This collection shows Orlando's desperate attempt to accustom to society around him and the kind of chav-culture s/he's encountering in the modern suburban world. At the same time, s/he cannot deny her/his history, and thus keeps her/his experiences as a man, woman, rich and poor in mind when dressing her/himself. ORLANDO was made at my second year of study at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp."
The collection features a literal collision of the masculine and feminine. Florals bleed into crisp, white shirt cotton, denim jeans are turned into a corset-like creations and pretty puffy blouses are left raw hemmed and fraying.
The whole collection expertly mixes high and low in an explosion of texture.