This year’s Lichting winner is Yvonne Kwok of the Amsterdam Fashion Institute (AMFI), whose collection sent punk princesses strutting down the runway during Amsterdam Fashion Week.
It is one of the most popular shows during Amsterdam Fashion Week and the frontrow is always packed with fashion editors, stylists, bloggers and celebs. This year was no different with the best of the best selected from the Dutch fashion schools such as AMFI, ArtEZ, Willem de Kooning, Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Academy of Fine Art/ Zuyd University, Royal Academy of Art The Hague and Utrecht School of the Arts.
She opened the show and she closed it with a bang. Yvonne Kwok – who graduated from AMFI Cum Laude – was already part of Individuals by AMFI (a twice-yearly fashion collection featuring some of the school’s most talented designers), interned at Viktor & Rolf and this year won the Lectra Award for 3D Virtual Prototyping.
During the opening moments of the show, the name Yvonne Kwok could be heard whispered in the audience. Many had already seen her work either at the AMFI graduation show or in London, during Graduate Fashion Week. As her collection came down the runway, it was clear from her use of materials, colour and overal finish, Kwok would be a strong contender.
In her collection, Kwok uses a multitude of different fabrics and colours. Girly punk is how some described it; frilly skirts combined with structured jackets and flatforms. There was something in the hosiery which gave it all an edgy twist. But of course the collection was more than what is seemed with colours referring to organs, strings to a sense of restriction and neoprene to a fleshy texture.
Kwok says this about her work: “My concept is about the battle with the mental disorder caused by the restrictions within the fashion system where pressure plays a major role. With reference to the marionette “a person who’s in service of someone else”, I want to mock this. Also by playing with the different placements of the limbs from the marionette it’s being taken out of context.”
As the judges said, this year the level was very high with the likes of Poul Brouwer (Rietveld), Miriam de Waard (KABK), Morta Griskeviciute (Rietveld) and Esther Kruyer (ArtEZ) producing some outstanding collections. The jury – who were Orsola de Castro (London) Marieke van Dongen (Antwerp), Corinna Springer (New York) Margareta van den Bosch (Stockholm) – certainly had their work cut out for them but it was generally agreed Kwok was the worthy winner of the €10,000 prize.
Lichting is supported by G-Star Raw and is an initiatiave of Premsela – The Netherlands Institute for Design and Fashion, HTNK and Amsterdam Fashion Week. Yvonne Kwok’s work can be seen at Options, Amsterdam.
List images: Peter Stigter
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