Edition upon edition, Belgian fashion designers – or fashion designers with a significant Belgian connection – have been scooping up prizes at the world renowned Hyères Festival. This year, remarkably, no less than three nominees for the Grand Prix could claim some link or other to this tiny country’s talent pool.
Australian Narelle Doré and Brazilian Paula Selby Avellaneda both touched base in Antwerp as students at some point of their fledgling careers. One fashion designer, however, is Belgian-born. Lucas Sponchiado graduated from that other lauded fashion school: La Cambre in Brussels. With his womenswear collection ‘Out of Vacuum’ he won The Public Palais de Tokyo/Villa Noailles Award. As Lucas took some time off to let it all sink in, Dazed Digital got a hold of him.
Dazed Digital: What was the concept behind your collection? Lucas Sponchiado: I was inspired by the female explorer and the India of colonial England. Other influences were the native Indian architecture, the work of Rachel Whiteread and the fragility of lingerie. This collection is actually the result of multiple inspirations, but all those elements helped to express my interest in working with the idea of a woman of contrast, a woman in metamorphosis. The collection merges massively detailed elements with pure lines and combines the strict and delicate.
DD: How did it feel to win one of the coveted Hyeres prizes? Lucas Sponchiado: I feel happy and honored. I am flattered that the public of Paris in the Palais de Tokyo were touched by my work - enough to make me their first choice. I feel grateful and I thank them.
DD: What do you think made your collection a deserved winner? Lucas Sponchiado: That’s a difficult question because I think that everybody has their own vision of my work for different reasons and I like that. So if I should say something I suppose I feel that my collection has a very sensual and feminine appeal yet is structured and graphic at the same time. It somehow gives a touch of magic in movement.