A rare chance to experience Iris van Herpen’s striking, otherworldly dresses.
Fashion designer Iris van Herpen (Dutch, b. 1984) marries precision and meticulous handcraft, inventive technological solutions, and a striking, futuristic aesthetic. Organized by the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, and Groninger Museum, The Netherlands, Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion gathers seven years of van Herpen’s original haute couture for this exhibition: her first North American tour. Opening February 4 at Carnegie Museum of Art, it presents 15 of her collections across a bewildering range of materials and techniques.
Pittsburgh is a city of creative makers and fabricators, a center of technology and robotics, and a supportive place for artists. A growing tech sector, and continued reckoning with its industrial past uniquely positions the city to respond to van Herpen’s designs, which are inspired by neuroscience and microbes, science fiction and the environment. She leans on new materials to do what traditional materials don’t, and employs new techniques to wring seemingly impossible forms out of traditional fabrics and common objects.
Iris van Herpen was accepted into the prestigious Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, the organization that governs the Paris fashion scene, in 2011, a recognition of her exacting craft and visionary approach. Her work stunned at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s blockbuster group exhibition Manus x Machina. Celebrities like Beyonce, Bjork, Lady Gaga, and Scarlett Johansson have sought her luxe, otherworldly dresses. Transforming Fashion is a rare chance to experience the broad sweep of her extraordinary designs together in one place.
The Carnegie Museum of Art presentation of Iris van Herpen: Transforming Fashion is organized by Rachel Delphia, The Alan G. and Jane A. Lehman Curator of Decorative Arts and Design.