Apart from the fact that it’s great
On Saturday night, amidst the chaos of London Fashion Week, Willy Vanderperre’s new exhibition prints, film, posters and more kicked off. Taking place at Store X, in the basement of Brutalist landmark 180 The Strand (home of the Dazed Media offices, FYI), the show sees over 50 of the photographer’s works hung on the stark, stripped-back walls of the vast show space, in addition to a number of specially-created video installations.
Vanderperre needs little by way of introduction; an international force majeure, the Belgian photographer has shaped the aesthetic of fashion since he emerged onto its landscape in the early 90s. A longtime collaborator (and great friend) of Raf Simons, he has shot everyone from A$AP Rocky and Millie Bobby Brown, to Harry Styles and the Kardashian-Jenners, and created campaigns for brands including Calvin Klein, Prada and Jil Sander over the course of his (almost) three-decade-long career.
Speaking to exhibition partners AnOther ahead of prints, film, posters and more’s opening, Vanderperre was keen for it not to be viewed as a retrospective. Instead, it's a curation of images – that don't span a certain timeframe, or form part of a particular theme – that lead up to the point he's at now, in 2018. “It’s so important that I’m living in the now,” the photographer told the publication, “London is a very ‘now’ city. It’s not so much about the past, it’s about the now and the future. That’s why I thought it was more important to show what I was working on at the moment.”
Though visiting the exhibition seems like a no-brainer to us, if you’re still waiting to be convinced, here are three reasons you really should head down to Store X and see it for yourself.
IT’S HIS FIRST EVER SOLO SHOW IN EUROPE
Take your chance while you can; though Vanderperre’s been based in Antwerp since he attended college there back in the late-80s, this is the first time such an extensive edit of his work has been put on display here in Europe. The exhibition builds on the photographer’s 2016 New York show of the same name, which took place at the Red Hook Labs in Brooklyn, and showcases images including Kate Moss in a red shirt from Raf Simons’ Sterling Ruby collection (from AnOther Magazine), Robbie Snelders and his Mickey Mouse face paint (which became the cover of Simons’ and Francesco Bonami’s fashion book The Fourth Sex: Adolescent Extremes), and Drag Race’s Pearl Liaison in Dior (taken from the pages of Dazed).
THERE’S A MERCH STAND
Do we need to spell this one out? In addition to one-of-a-kind prints, records, postcards and pin badges, there’s also a set of limited edition 90s-style band tees complete with images of The Cure, Adam Ant, Iron Maiden, and... Britney Spears on the line-up. Be there, see the exhibition, get the t-shirt.
We might be almost two months on from Christmas (though it feels like eight years ago, given how long the fashion season has rolled on for), but the war December waged on our bank balances hasn’t been reconciled yet; which makes the fact that prints, film, posters and more is free even better than it already was. That you don’t have to pay for entry also means you’ll have extra money to spend on some sweet Willy merch (see: point two).
prints, film, posters and more runs at the Store X, 180 the Strand, London, WC2R 1EA until March 17, 2018.