Dear Diane & dear Shaded Viewers,
The book is an anthology of over 30 years of collaboration, with emphasis on the duo's non-commercial work, including projects with other like-minded people such as Narcisse Tordoir, Martin Margiela, A.F. Vandevorst, Jurgi Persoons and Andrea Cammarosano. It should be viewed as an antidote to their fashion assignements.
"This book starts and ends with a scream", says Inge Grognard. The images Inge is referring to are a black-and-white photo of Kristina -one of Martin Margiela's house models- with her two brothers, and a colour photo of two of Inge's cats. "The scream symbolizes how Ronald and I communicate. To outsiders the way we work together must come across as very harsh. We tend to yell at each other a lot and discussions can easily get out of hand."
Creatively, they work well off this tension and it clearly shows in their collective work. The images mentionned above embrace the rest of the book and jolt you with a shock to an oeuvre that balances the brutal -often to the point of agressive- with the fragile. Grognard and Stoops' images function as a highly personal mirror for themselves, their relationship and their collaboration with others.
Inge and Ronald started their careers in the early 1980s, coinciding with the international breakthrough of Belgian fashion. In their early days they made valuable contributions to the imagery of Dries Van Noten, Dirk Bikkembergs, Walter Van Beirendonck, Dirk Van Saene and Martin Margiela amongst others. The second generation of Belgian designers including Raf Simons, Veronique Branquinho, A.F. Vandevorst and Jurgi Persoons have also found Grognard and Stoops' strong visual language invaluable.
Inge Grognard/Ronald Stoops, available in bookstores at the end of October 2010
Published by Ludion, ISBN 978-90-5544-984-2,