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(c)Jamie Hawkesworth
Photography Jamie Hawkesworth

J.W.Anderson to curate exhibition ft. Dior and Rei Kawakubo

Featuring work by Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore too, the designer’s show will explore ideas of gender and identity

It’s no secret that Northern Irish designer J.W.Anderson is a fan of the visual arts – and it’s a love that feeds into his designs. Take his SS16 womenswear collection for example, which featured squiggles inspired by the work of New York graffiti/visual artist Keith Haring. But his love for art transcends the medium on fashion – over the past year, he’s published several books in collaboration with cult creators including film director Larry Clark and photographer Ian David Baker.

Now, however, Anderson is taking it to the next level by staging a full-blown art exhibition. “This is a rare and exciting opportunity for me to bring together some of the works of art and fashion that long inspired my own creative work and to see what happens when these objects rub up against each other,” he says. 

Opening on March 18th 2017 at The Hepworth Wakefield in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, Disobedient Bodies: J.W.Anderson will feature work from a range of artists and designers from the 20th and 21st centuries. From Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Louise Bourgeois and Naum Gabo to Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier, Rei Kawakubo and Helmut Lang.

“I want the exhibition to mirror the speed and unexpected encounters that characterise the way in which we consume images today, as well as being a space in which to explore ideas of gender and identity that have been an ongoing part of my creative practice.”

While gender has become a buzzword in fashion recently, it’s been part of Anderson’s vernacular for a while. Ever since he burst onto the London fashion scene in 2008, the designer has defied traditional notions of masculinity with collections that have been labelled “androgynous” and “gender-bending.” It will be interesting to see how he continues to explore these themes through this exhibition.

Disobedient Bodies: J.W.Anderson at The Hepworth Wakefield is on display from March 18th-June 18th, 2017