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Queen Máxima to open "The Future of Fashion is Now" in Shanghai
Viktor & Rolf Haute Couture, Season autumn/winter 2013. Photo: Peter Stigter.

SHANGHAI.- On the initiative of DutchCulture, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s highly successful ‘The Future of Fashion is Now’ will be the very first Bojimans exhibition to be shown in China. Her Majesty Queen Máxima will open this exhibition of work by more than 25 international fashion designers on 28 October, during the state visit of the Netherlands to China.

The exhibition, which was shown at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in the autumn of 2014, presents the fashion of the future as envisaged by the youngest generation of fashion designers. More than 25 up-and-coming fashion talents from around the world were invited to provide work, including eight designers from China and five from elsewhere in Asia, such as Dooling Jiang (China), Wang Lei (China), Zhang Da (China), Little Shilpa (India) and Movana Chen (China). The presentation also includes designs by respected Dutch innovators such as Viktor&Rolf, Iris van Herpen and Pauline van Dongen, and Elisa van Joolen, Pauline van Dongen and Antoine Peters are actually travelling to China to share their expertise. These fashion designers are actively pursuing innovation in the world of fashion, employing futuristic technologies, innovative manufacturing processes and the sustainability of clothing as guiding principles to shape the fashion of tomorrow. The exhibition can be seen at OCT Contemporary Art Terminal in Shanghai from 29 October 2015 to 28 February 2016. It will then transfer to OCT Art & Design Gallery in Shenzhen, where it will be on show from 26 March to 31 July 2016.

Innovation This project enjoys the enthusiastic support of the Chinese enterprise OCT (proprietor of the two art institutions in China), The Pin Projects, Chinese fashion academies and businesses, and fashion designers themselves, because it casts its gaze to the future of fashion. The exhibition broaches questions about the ways in which fashion is changing under the influence of technology and the concept of the circular economy. The latest generation of Chinese designers is actively concerned with these aspects of fashion. The chosen locations are well suited to the exhibition’s subject: Shanghai is the traditional fashion hub where designers establish themselves, while in the vicinity of Shenzhen one finds plenty of manufacturing companies which are experimenting with new technologies.

Public programme to promote cooperation in China The exhibition serves as inspiration for fashion training courses to cooperate in the realm of research and training, as well as a stimulus for industry and innovative designers to enter into collaborative relationships. A public programme is being organised to accompany the exhibition, with various academies being invited to share their expertise. Contributors include Donghua and DeTAO (Shanghai) and Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, as well as designers such as ZugZug, Za Dang and Dooling Jiang. The Dutch contributors to this international exhibition project include Control Union.

International exchange and cooperation The cooperation with China to present ‘The Future of Fashion is Now’ offers Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen the opportunity to enhance its international profile. It is also a means for the museum to share its knowledge and experience in exhibition development with museums in China, with a view to the further professionalization of this sector. The close ties between the twin cities of Rotterdam and Shanghai mean it is a logical step for museums in China and the Netherlands to strengthen their relationships and serve as a vehicle for the sharing of expertise in the realm of fashion innovation. The exhibition is a collaborative effort of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen with OCT and DutchCulture, Centre for International Cooperation. DutchCulture is endeavouring to expand and strengthen the cultural network with Chinese artists and institutions. Cultural cooperation with China is becoming increasingly important because of the country’s increasing global significance in cultural, economic and geopolitical spheres.

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