RAF SIMONS SS’23 x Collaboration with the estate of Philippe Vandenberg | Words by Nafiseh Soolari

Dear Shaded Viewers,

Let’s start with who even is Philippe Vandenberg. He was a Belgian painter whose central theme in his work was a man’s struggle with himself and others, observed through the lens of cultural, political, and social history. In Vandenberg’s art, this struggle is often critical, sometimes compassionate, but always imagined in rich color and with a pinch of humor. So using this artwork in the latest collection by RAF SIMONS is surely something to consider when viewing the pieces.

Handwriting, dancing across paper, is translated to fabric. Their messages give cause for consideration – a moment of pause. They speak of ideas rejected and renewed, destruction as a prerequisite for creation.

From SIMON’s end what you get is finely tailored blazers and biker jackets sliced away to tank tops, the idea is minimalistic garments, removing the superfluous. Fine knit and stocking fabric that gave the impression of a second skin. A combination of bodysuits amplified the silhouette. Belts and buckles and slits showed off the skin for a Spring-Summer energy. Classic fits in wool with elastic flex highlighted the torso. Trousers with panels of fabric, and skirts combined with stretch made movement a thing to be beheld. To embellish the ensembles further, there were pieces of jewelry shaped like skeletal hands or vampire fangs to give the symbolism of remainders of humanity.



Images courtesy of RAF SIMONS

Nafiseh Soolari

Nafiseh Soolari is a creative consultant, writer and photographer— "I love translating the beauty I see in all the moments around me, people, places, things; and I aspire to share my vision: to create a single moment for me and you to connect and realize what this amazing world has to offer..."