Every year, MoMu gives the ‘MoMu award’ to a MA student of the fashion department of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Antwerp. The award is given on the basis of the creative vision and technical merit of the graduation collection, which is on view for four months at the MoMu Gallery.
For someone her age, Madeleine Coisne is very much imbued with a sense of history. She relates this to her childhood memories which still influence her today, like her father’s double buckle shoes which she integrated in her collection. Her mother’s taste for strange objects with a soul, with a historical and emotional value, might also have something to do with it. As inspirations, she cites the abstract patterns of the tiles of the Antwerp railway arches, the bold graphic shapes sometimes found on flat ecclesiastical and religious textiles, patterns from Byzantine architecture, but also colours from modern artists such as Mondriaan and Gauguin.
She translates this in a collection of monumental, Japanese looking shapes with deep rich colours and a wealth of different textiles varying from smooth and silky to more raggedy swatches. She integrates men’s ties fabrics into her abstract appliqué motives on the 2D panels that hold her silhouettes together. Coisne does not stop there however: she cuts angular shapes into the garments that create depth or she lets a scarf engulf a dress from below. Her mix of old and new shapes and abstract patterns with historical references show that labels like ‘old’ and ‘new’ are very relative.