The Futuristic Fashion of Iris van Herpen

Iris van Herpen, Biopiracy

Although you may find her creations rather futuristic than cyberpunk, Iris van Herpen is a Dutch fashion designer every science fiction fan should pay attention. Even if you aren’t into fashion, her aesthetic is a rich source of inspiration for artists, especially those who work with character design. In this post, I will show you some of her collections that will break with the black latex-neon lights stereotype for the making of new cyberpunk ambiences.

Iris Van Herpen, Refinery Smoke

Refinery Smoke, July 2008

Inspired by the smoke produced in refineries, Van Herpen gave an industrial touch to her collection.

Iris van Herpen, Capriole

Capriole, July 2011

As if H. R. Giger was into fashion, this collection makes us feel like some clothes are made of Alien stuff, devouring its victims. Van Herpen presented Capriole on her debut in Paris as member of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. This is compilation of highlights from previous collections.

Iris Van Herpen, Hybrid Holism

Hybrid Holism, July 2012

Van Herpen is well known for her projects featuring architecture. In Hybrid Holism, she has worked with Philip Beesley, a Canadian architect who inspired her to create a collection based in Hylozoism, the ancient belief that all matter is in some sense alive.

Iris van Herpen, Voltage

Voltage, January 2013

Together with Philip Beesley once again, Van Herpen proposes an alchemist approach to fashion as she works with materials and structures that represent how the reaction of chemistry and electricity causes structures to respond to their environment and react as living beings.

Iris van Herpen, Embossed Sounds

Embossed Sounds, October 2013

Featuring intelligent clothes that generate sounds by touch, this collection explores the human body as an orchestra played by electronic instruments. With a combination of softness and underground rebel biker attitude, the outfits combine handcrafted patterns with 3D printing.

Iris van Herpen, Biopiracy

Biopiracy, March 2014

In this collection, Van Herpen addresses the topics of biology and physicality. She is reminded by a recent past, when patents on genes were purchased, and she questions if we are actually the sole proprietor of our own bodies. The fashion designer worked with the artist Lawrence Malstaf during her presentation at Paris Fashion Week. Models floated in the air, in embryonic poses, pressed inside a big plastic bag where they kept locked and breathing through a tube.

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Written by Lidia Zuin
Brazilian journalist and cyberpunk enthusiast with a masters in semiotics, now living in UK. Interested in art, music, culture, philosophy, games, psychology and futurism.

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