From 29 January to 5 April 2014, the Galerie des Galeries – the Lafayette exhibition space – will host the first solo by the Belgian designer Jean-Paul Lespagnard. An interesting choice of exhibition format that just goes to prove how the need to find more original ways than the classic runway for communication fashion is becoming increasingly more important. Even more so for new talents. Lespagnard (class of 1979), already showed all his creativity even as a young boy: making corsets for his sisters from his father’s tyres. Curious and fascinated by surrealism, he studied Visual Arts and Fashion Design at the IFAPME in Liège, Belgium. He started his career by working two seasons with Anna Sui, going on to become Annemie Verbeke’s assistant. The turning point came in 2008, when he took part in the 23rd Festival International de Mode et de Photographie in Hyères, winning not one but two awards. This well-known competition gave him the chance to produce and present a capsule collection which immediately aroused great interest. Fascinated by art in all its forms, pop and surreal, and also urban, he worked with Villa Noailles, with the French singer Yelle and with the choreographers Meg Stuart, Pierre Droulers and Gilles Jobin.
It is difficult to find a single word that describes work by Jean-Paul Lespagnard: he is a designer with Baroque imagination who manages to merge the widest variety of references, from sport to popular culture, right through to classic music. This show in Paris gets its ideas and name from his Spring/ Summer 2014 collection “Till We Drop”: insight into the artificial paradises of Mexico, like the Hotel Riviera Maya, with its tourists and blaring colours. An exhibition that reveals the colourful eccentric world of this young talent to visitors, together with his creative process thanks to drawings and visuals of his untiring imagination. Running through the entire display is his marked sense of humour, an ingenious irony that can be felt in all his creations.