Frankfurt: Nordic Fashion Biennale 2014

This Friday, the third Nordic Fashion Biennale will  open at the Museum of Applied Arts (Museum Angewandte Kunst) in Frankfurt, Germany.  The Biennale will be an investigation into the roots and inspiration of the emerging Nordic fashion scene in the three islands nations of Greenland, Iceland and the Faroe Islands. It will as well offer the exhibition The Weather Diaries, showcasing the works of many of the most talented designers from the Nordic islands, a selection of young as well as more established fashion designers.   The participating artists this year are:

Mundi (IS), STEiNUN (IS), JÖR by Guðmundur Jörundsson (IS), Kría (IS), Hrafnhildur Arnardóttir a.k.a. Shoplifter (IS), Guðrun & Guðrun (FOE), Barbara I gongini (FOE), Rammatik (FOE), Bibi Chemnitz (GL), Najannguaq Lennert (GL), Nikolaj Kristensen and Jessie Kleemann (GL).

The Nordic Fashion Biennale is an initiative of the Nordic House in Iceland.  “The Biennale was first held in 2009 at the Nordic House in Iceland attracting a lot of visitors as well as gaining a lot of interest from abroad.  The organizers decided to have this a bi-annual event and to find a venue outside of the Nordic region in order to bring the concept of West Nordic Fashion to new audience”  says Ilmur Dögg Gísladóttir the Biennales event producer.  “The NFB 2011 venue was at the Nordic Heritage Museum in Seattle where  the museums attendance records reached all time high during the exhibition period.  The curator at that time was the Icelandic artist Hrafnhildur Arnardóttir a.k.a. Shoplifter who is among the participating designers/artists at the Biennale this year.  The curators have not been from the fashion industry, which emphasizes that this is not a fashion event but a mixture and a dialogue between different art mediums. The Nordic house is a cultural institution and to us fashion is yet another form of artistic expression” says Ilmur.

By stepping out of the seasons of fashion the focus of this years Biennale will be on the essence and nature of the designers work.  Each of them has been asked to create new works representing their metaphorical self that will as well be visually interpreted in photographic images by the renowed artistic duo Cooper & Gorfer who are also the events curators.

Cooper & Gorfer are known for their strong narrative imagery with references to culture and fashion and were commissioned to create a photographic exhibition interpreting fashion from Iceland Greenland and the Faroe Islands.  The outcome is the exhibition The Weather Diaries  and a book that shows a new and uncommon approach of photography and fashion.  The exhibition consists of eleven installations from the selected designers among the large scale photographic art works of Cooper & Gorfer. It is a story about fashion and it´s importance in shaping a cultural identity showing personal histories and process through texts and a short exhibition film.

The Biennale will be open from 21.03 – 22.06.2014 at the Museum Angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt.

All photos are by Cooper & Gorfer.

03 - Steinunn


03 - Kria

03 - Shoplifter

03 - NFB Gudrun

03 - Barbara