This activity took place on:
Monday 30 Oct ’17
30 october: Johannes Vermeer Award 2017 goes to Iris van Herpen
The Johannes Vermeer Award is the Dutch government’s prize for the arts; its aim is to celebrate and encourage artistic talent. Since 2009, this prestigious award has been presented to an artist working in the Netherlands who has made a contribution of exceptional importance to art and society. In order to select the winner, the Minister of Education, Culture and Science is assisted by an independent jury, which conducts an extensive assessment of every corner of the art world, and also ensures that all the different branches of the arts are addressed proportionately. The jury also takes account of the stage in their career which potential prize winners have reached. The Johannes Vermeer Award is intended for those who have already produced a distinctive and established oeuvre, and from whom great things continue to be expected. In other words, the prize winner’s artistic career is in full swing.
For the first time in the history of the prize, this year’s edition has gone to an artist who works in the world of fashion. At the age of 33, designer Iris van Herpen is the youngest prize winner yet, although she already has gained so much experience and acclaim that she is an established part of today’s national and international fashion scene. Over the last ten years, she has rapidly established her own renowned label, producing contemporary collections which are about so much more than just clothes. Her work has redefined the boundaries of fashion. Her style is characterized by an interdisciplinary approach: an idiosyncratic combination of the visual arts, dance, technology and science, which not only creates breath-taking aesthetics, but also constantly pushes at the boundaries of fashion. Her designs create a bridge between artisan craftsmanship and radical innovation. This is a direct result of the creative curiosity and unbridled productivity that led the jury’s unanimous decision to name Iris van Herpen as the winner of the Johannes Vermeer Award.
The jury has been profoundly impressed by Iris van Herpen’s unique aesthetic vision. She is an exceptionally talented and ground-breaking designer who challenges fashion while at the same time redefining it. Her fascination with other the artistic disciplines ensures that she continues to approach the design process with an enthusiasm, originality and quality that has proved to be without parallel in the Netherlands or elsewhere. Van Herpen combines innovative digital techniques and revolutionary materials with traditional artisanship. Her ground-breaking collections, whether haute couture or prêt-à-porter, each have their own distinct and recognizable signature from the very beginning. But the new shapes and unusual silhouettes that she creates are never far-removed from the human body; they complement it, and make it stronger.
Full of conviction that her creative inspiration will continue long into the future, and that her work will continue to inspire and encourage others, the jury is proud to announce that Iris van Herpen is the winner of the Johannes Vermeer Award 2017.
The prize jury consisted of Els van der Plas (chairperson), Michel van der Aa (laureate in 2015), Ann Demeester, Jeroen Krabbé and Stephan Sanders.
For more information: johannesvermeerprijs.nl
Picture: Annemoon van Hemel