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"From the age of 13 I began to draw clothes spontaneously. Still, I went to Design Academy instead of training as a fashion designer, because I wanted to learn more in general about form, colour and material, without plunging into the medium of fashion right away," says Camiel Fortgens, who is nominated for a Keep an Eye grant.

"Globalisation and the internet have mixed all cultural elements into one big mess of options. I feel that we are drowning in it, we are being tumbled around in a great big tombola of cultural influences. And that this has made us lose all grip on who we are and where we stand at the moment. And without having a grip, a fixed point, we cannot be progressive.

With my collection 'Known' my intention was to make a 'still', away from any trends, and demonstrate the basic form men’s fashion is taking 'now'. A form that gives us something to hold onto, something recognisable. I based my pieces on archetypal silhouettes and fabrics, such as denim, the T-shirt. The clothes seem to ignore the body, so to speak, and seem to float around the body like 2D-shapes. And yet it is a very wearable collection.

If I win the € 11,000, I am going to take my collection to Paris. I want to go into fashion and stay there. I hope to be able to promote my philosophy on fashion and to make a contribution to men’s fashion and culture in general. My inspiration does not necessarily come from other designers. But Raf Simons is a good example for me because he came to work in fashion from a broader design discipline as well. I am driven by an ambition to take a critical approach to fashion, without being too much steeped in prior knowledge of it, but based on my training as a designer."

The photos you see in this article are Camiel's own material.


Published: 02-Sep-2014 08:54
  • If Camiel wins a Keep an Eye grant...

    Known by Camiel Fortgens

  • If Camiel wins a Keep an Eye grant...

    Known collection piece