News & Runway


London’s Barbican Art Gallery has invited quirky Dutch design duo Viktor & Rolf to curate a retrospective of their work.

Starting in mid-June, an array of two-foot-tall dolls will populate the Barbican in miniature remakes of Viktor & Rolf’s greatest hits.

Based in Amsterdam, Viktor Horsting, Rolf Snoeren, and over two dozen staff have been working diligently on the small garments. A Belgian manufacturer is making the doll faces in the images of the runway models that originally wore the outfits.

One can only expect such ideas from the eccentric designers. Not only do their mannerisms and personal uniforms render them mysterious, but for ten years their runway shows have been teeming with unusual and inspiring looks and presentations.

Remember the upside-down clothing, layered collars, models dressed up as beds, and the V&R Monsieur menswear line the designers modeled entirely on their own? With intriguing titles like “Tapdance,” “Tilda Swinton,” “Blacklight,” and “Russian Doll,” Viktor & Rolf’s concise runway shows filled with otherworldly silhouettes and colors have long wowed fashion editors.

Following their 1992 graduation from the Arnhem Academy of Art, Horsting and Snoeren teamed up to enter France’s Hyères young designer competition in 1993. With little experience under their belts, they won, returned to Holland, and started charting our their careers.

Since then, Viktor & Rolf have showed well over a dozen collections (including ready-to-wear, menswear, and accessories), developed fragrances with L’Oreal, designed a line for H&M, sold in major luxury retailers, and opened their own boutiques.

The Barbican Art Gallery and Merrell Publishers will release a companion book for The House of Viktor & Rolf. The hardback tome will weigh in at nearly 300 pages, with over 200 color photos, designer sketches, and other exclusive footage and information.

“The House of Viktor & Rolf” exhibit runs at the Barbican Art Gallery,

June 18 to Sept 21, 2008