The future of Fashion is not just about new trends, it is about the urgent need for a new consciousness. High-end fashion must set an example in the clothing industry by adopting the highest ethical standards. These standards need to be transparent, because without transparency the consumer lacks the information to make informed ethical choices. With this exhibition, Bruno Pieters shows how he not only offers totally ethical, environmentally-friendly designs, but also leads the way in offering 100% transparency to the consumer.
There are two parts to the exhibition: ’The Clothes’ and ‘Behind the Clothes’.
Divided into 3 sections.
Section 1: A Tribute.
Pieters has created five new designs and slogans dedicated to one of his Fashion Heroes, British
designer Katharine Hamnett. Hamnett was the first designer to use fashion as a vehicle to make a bold
statement on the political, environmental and philosophical issues of the time. Her then revolutionary and
now classic t-shirts bore slogans demanding social change printed in angry black lettering.
Section 2: Transparency.
A selection of five designs from Pieters’ new brand Honest By. For every item Pieters has shared all the
information about the sources of the materials used, the manufacturing processes involved, and the price
calculation, right down to Honest By’s mark-up. For full transparency, check the Honest By website:
Section 3: Re-made.
Pieters made his name from his sharp and intricate tailoring. For this exhibition he has recreated five of his
most renowned catwalk styles – presented in Paris between 2001 and 2009 – using sustainable and
ethical fabrics. A challenge inspired by his new brand Honest By.
Pieters has recreated six of his favourite skirts designed between 2001 and 2009, this time using
sustainable and ethical fabrics. A challenge inspired by his new brand Honest By.
Pieters has recreated four of his most innovative jackets designs from the period between 2001 and 2009,
this time using sustainable and ethical fabrics. A challenge inspired by his new brand Honest By.
B. Behind the clothes:
Behind the clothes – literally and figuratively – Pieters presents a series of portrait photographs of over 40
people involved in the Belgian fashion making process here in Antwerp.
The series includes portraits of Etienne Debruyne, a Belgian Flax producer; Raymond Libeert CEO of
Libeco – one of the few surviving manufacturers of linen in Belgium; and Rosalinde Heerkens and Aurélie
Callewaert of Trois Quarts – Antwerp’s renowned pattern designer duo.
The series also showcases Fashion creatives and image makers including photographer Alex Salinas;
make-up artist Gina Van den Bergh; stylist Ilja de Weerdt; and model Anouck Lepère.
In short, a journey behind the clothes showcases 40 members of the creative/ production team, from the
raw material to the ad campaign, and every talent along the way.
All photography by Bruno Pieters
The ‘Applause’ soundtrack for the ‘(Behind) the Clothes’ exhibition has been created by Antwerp sound
designer Senjan Jansen of SenStudio. Jansen has collaborated with Pieters since the start of his career.
He is also currently working as sound designer on fashion shows for Belgian designers Dries Van Noten,
Haider Ackermann, and Christian Wijnants .
Did you know that Antwerp holds more than 8000 creative organisations? The project Born in Antwerp
puts this gigantic creative economy in the spotlights. From April 22nd to October 2nd of 2016, Born in
Antwerp will organise exhibitions, seminars, concerts, local markets and workshops. Because with this
many creative minds in the city a whole lot of great ideas are Born in Antwerp! Our basecamp are the
‘Born in Antwerp Headquarters’ in the neighbourhood ‘Eilandje’, where everyone is welcome, also to have
a drink or a bite. Download the free app ‘Born in Antwerp’ in the Google Play Store or iOS App Store with
the program and calendar. For background info, see www.borninantwerp.be
Bruno Pieters, Belgian fashion designer and art director highly regarded for his avant-garde creations and
sharp tailoring, believes that “fashion is about beauty and that the story behind fashion can be equally
beautiful”. With Honest by, he puts this philosophy into practice.
Pieters, born in Bruges, Belgium in 1975, trained at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp,
graduating with a BA in Fashion Design in 1999. He developed his craft working with designers including
Martin Margiela, Thimister and Christian Lacroix in Paris, as well as Antonio Pernas in Madrid.
In July 2001, Pieters presented his first couture collection – the first Belgian graduate to present an
Artisanal collection during Paris couture week. In 2002, he debuted his ready-to-wear collections for both
men and women in Paris, and soon made a name for himself: Suzy Menkes, legendary editor for Vogue
International, described the discovery of “an intriguing new talent”.
In 2005, Pieters was named creative director of the men’s line at Delvaux – the oldest fine leather goods
house in the world – a role which he held until 2007. During his time there he won the Swiss Textile Award
in 2006, followed by the Andam Fashion Award from the Pierre Berge and Yves Saint Laurent Foundation
a year later. His designs – often described as ‘architectural’ – were admired for their intricate tailoring and
construction work. Vogue Runway Director Nicole Phelps highlighted “the beauty of the clean, precise
lines of Pieters’ tailoring” that revealed a “real devotion to craft”.
In June 2007 Pieters was appointed Creative Director for the avant-garde line Hugo by Hugo Boss,
beginning a successful three-year collaboration. At the same time, he continued to expand his own label,
launching eyewear and homewear. However, in 2010, he announced both his departure from Hugo Boss
and the retirement of his own label in order to take a sabbatical.
From 2010 until early 2012 Pieters travelled through India. His experiences in the subcontinent had a
radical affect on his outlook on life. He became increasingly concerned for the environment, animal
welfare, and children’s causes. In January 2012, he returned to make what Oliver Horton in The New York
Times described as a “revolutionary” new statement in the fashion world with his new company, Honest
By – the world’s first 100% transparent company and pioneer in price transparency. Honest By publishes
its entire supply chain for every product it creates and translates this into total price transparency.
In 2014 Pieters established the Future Fashion Designer Scholarship (FFDS) – the first of its kind. The
scholarship is designed to support students with the ambition to work in a transparent and sustainable way
outside the existing fashion mould. Successful applicants are not only awarded a share of a total annual
bursary of 10,000 euros, but benefit also from guidance and mentoring from Pieters and his Honest By
Earlier this year, Pieters launched the ‘List ‘ on his Honest By website; a freely accessible databank of
sustainable fabric and yarn suppliers that enables designers to make even more informed choices
regarding ethical fashion. As Pieters explains: “Every yard of fabric a designer orders can be a tool for
(Behind) the Clothes
05.06.16 – 31.07.16
11am – 6pm
Kattendijkdok-Oostkaai 22, 2000 Antwerp