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Iris van Herpen – ‘Synesthesia’

Inspired by the cross-sensational phenomenon of feeling sound, smelling motion, and hearing colour, Iris van Herpen continues her uniquely adventurous approach to fashion with her Autumn/Winter 2010 collection ‘Synesthesia.’

By Editor /asdf 25-02-2010

Synesthesia: A condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces the visualization of a colour. The high sensitivity of synesthetic experience can lead to perceptual enhancement, mixed sensation, or sensory overload.   

Iris van Herpen returned to London Fashion Week to present her new Autumn/Winter 2010 collection ‘Synesthesia’, inspired by the cross-sensational phenomenon of feeling sound, smelling motion, and hearing colour. Continuing to challenge perceptions of leatherwork, and maintaining her acute attention to detail, Iris van Herpen created fashion for all the senses this season.  

Sensitive bodies, fragile lines, and three-dimensional structures contrasting with dark lines, unexpected flesh, and reflection trick the eyes and take the form of twisting cords, web-like knots, and multilayered leather threadwork. Pieces are neutralized by dark purple and black as a base, and punctuated with shimmering golds, and brilliant metallics to create a collection that elicits sensation and feeling whilst remaining visually stunning. The three-dimensional shapes, transparency and reflection provide a whole that is optically alienating. Together with architectonic shoe label United Nude, Van Herpen designed new shoes for the show.

"It would be good if fashion and the way of presentation could melt together into one big overall experience stimulating all the senses. Such that, not only do you see clothes but can also smell, hear and feel them," says Van Herpen.

It is Van Herpen's second season in London with her uniquely adventurous approach to fashion. Her Spring/Summer 2010 collection ‘Radiation Invation’ received critical acclaim and went on the be featured in the debut season of the exclusive Harrods' Launches initiative. Van Herpen is also in a two-year collaboration with noted Dutch choreographer Nannine Lining having designed 23 original costumes for her poetic works ‘Synthetic Twin’ and ‘Endless Song of Silence'. This latest collection will also have a showroom presentation in Paris from 5-8 March in the form of a installation at the Ilan Engel Gallery.

Photography: Michel Zoeter

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