Início Tech Iris Van Herpen Named a Knight of the Order of Arts and...

Iris Van Herpen Named a Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters

“My creative path has been a hybrid one,” Iris Van Herpen told a small gathering in Paris Tuesday after she was named a Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters.

“Throughout the years I’ve been connecting nature to dance, dance to couture, couture to sculpture, and sculpture to science,” she continued. “This has been my way of exploring.”

The event was held at the grand Paris residence of Jan Versteeg, ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to France since 2022. Guests wondered about the purpose of a tall blue and white ceramic object on a table that resembled a pagoda.

“It’s a tulip vase,” Versteeg said, also recounting the history of the Flemish tapestries that decorated the salon where the award ceremony took place. Van Herpen’s green dress, from her “Aeriform” collection, carried a “Tron”-like grid of lines that served as a futuristic foil to the setting.

Olivier Gabet, director of the decorative arts department at the Louvre, pinned the green medal on the designer, lauding the “mix of fierceness and quietness” in her designs; her ability to make each of her couture collections and its presentation method a “total work of art,” and her “hopefulness about humanity and beauty.”

He noted the latter was expressed on a grand scale at the “blockbuster” retrospective at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs that he had initiated. “Sculpting the Senses,” which wrapped a five-month run in Paris last April, just moved to the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia, and is programmed for stops in Singapore, the Netherlands and the U.S.

Versteeg told the gathering, to a few chuckles, that Van Herpen has in recent years supplanted architect Rem Koolhaas as the most in-demand Dutch cultural figure, so he could see the distinction from the French state coming.

Established in 1957 to recognize artists and writers, as well as others who have contributed significantly to the arts in France, the Order of Arts and Letters has been awarded to the likes of Giambattista Valli, Simon Porte Jacquemus, architect Peter Marino and the late fashion editor André Leon Talley.

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