Are we on the eve of a new era? Wars, conflicts and catastrophes are not the only issues that change the way we view our world. There is no question: Digitalisation and globalisation enhance and facilitate our life, yet they also have a fundamental impact on the world. Smartphones make every networking attempt of the past look like a simple prelude. The start-up culture, shareconomy, co-creation, crowdsourcing and swapping, as well as the disruptive business models of international investors have created a completely new kind of economy. Hardly any industry remains unaffected by this change, whether it is the media, infrastructure, hotel business, work processes, shopping and last, but not least, fashion.
There was no fashion industry in the early 1980s, yet each season a new, and often radical, fashion statement appeared on the scene. Today there is a lack of variety in the stores, despite an oversaturation of designers, concepts and brands on the market. Promising young designers seem to appear and die out like shooting stars. Has commerce choked creativity?
At the same time, the on-screen “wow” effect and the distinction thus generated in social networks seems to have become more important than the effect of the fashion on the body. Thanks to the plethora of new communication channels, the power of bloggers and street style photographers large labels are losing significance. The consumer’s appreciation is waning: apparel costs as much as a cup of coffee, and some consumers wear clothes for only half the amount of time spent to make them.
Yet fondness for mass-produced apparel is considered bad taste. Even the shopping mall full of chain stores promotes: “This isn’t mainstream. This is street style.”
The European Fashion Award FASH 2016 with the subject “Change” is searching for visions of a new era. How can fashion react to all these changes? Should there be more adaptation, subversive strategies, or should we dream completely new dreams? Who will ride the wave of change and claim the future?
A jury consisting of international design, industry, and media experts will select the award winners according to set criteria. The decision of the jury is final and cannot be contested in a court of law.
Members of the Jury FASH 2016:
Margareta van den Bosch is as Creative Advisor responsible for the H&M Guest Collections with Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, Viktor & Rolf, Madonna, Roberto Cavalli, Comme des Garçon, Versace or Marni. After her degree at Beckman’s School of Design, she worked for the Swedish women’s wear companies, Bari and Milano, followed by jobs in Italy. She teaches at Beckman’s School of Design. From 1987 to 2008 she was as Head of Design co-responsbiel for the rise of the swedish Fashion Giant. www.hm.com
Joel S. Horwitz, Designer, Berlin
Sébastien Meunier was named Artistic Director of Ann Demeulemeester in 2013, having designed the men’s collection in-house since 2010. Hailing from Versailles, Meunier abandoned the study of law for fashion and his eponymous label, however an early affinity with Belgian design led to a decade at the right hand of Martin Margiela. His work fuses a seductive awareness of the body with moments of baroque finery and a raw touch. Today Meunier’s vision evolves the house of Ann Demeulemeester into the future with an intimate respect for its illustrious past. www.anndemeulemeester.be
Michael Sontag finished his fashion studies in 2009 with a degree as “Meisterschüler” at Weißensee Kunsthochschule Berlin. Since then, he presents his collections at Fashion Week Berlin. He won valuable prizes and is considered as an iconic fashion designer. His works have been presented in Rome, Jakarta, Shanghai, Singapore and Paris. Michael Sontag was invited for the “Salon Vogue” in Milan by Franca Sozzani and Anna Wintour as well as in Berlin by Christiane Arp. Michael Sontag lives and works in Berlin. www.michaelsontag.com
Franco P. Tettamanti earned a degree in medicine at the University of Switzerland and worked as an orthopaedic surgery assistant in his native Switzerland, before becoming an award winning photographer. He has studied cinematography and photography in New York, Paris and Zurich. He lives now in Paris where he is a well established photographer in the Parisian Haute Couture Fashion industry and working for clients such as Dior, Louis Vuitton, Akris, Vivienne Westwood, Universal Music, Madame Figaro and Prestige Magazine Hong Kong. Tettamanti published his atmospheric pictures in the book “Showtime”. www.francotettamanti.com