Actions may speak louder than words, but if your clothes did the work for you, what would they say? In the hands of Dutch multimedia artist Thomas Voorn, garments become textile graffiti — his chosen catalyst for poetic expression, social commentary, and now, indie fashion slogans. For a limited time, his wearable media will festoon the windows and interior of London indie menswear mecca, B Store.
Voorn’s technique, developed two years ago, entails turning individual clothing items into a bricolage alphabet. These days, he frequently travels Europe, leaving poetic garment trails in his wake. He considers this “temporary landscape pollution”. We just think it is damn cool, and apparently, so do hip Londoners, who are flocking to B Store to see his work in person.
Given the season, Voorn acknowledges the yuletide spirit in his B Store exhibit, albeit in his own oddball manner. He has created a Christmas poem called “Cosmic Christian Ceremony”, a colorful fabric tribute whose references run the gamut of indie fashion luminaries: Bi-La-Li, Bernhard Willhelm, Natalia Brilli, Ian Batten and Ann-Sofie Back.
Though Voorn’s sartorial installations are not exactly alien to European art mavens, his latest project is raising eyebrows because of its so-called commercial duality. But Banksy commissions his art to musicians, so why shouldn’t Voorn display his artfully altered apparel at, well, stores that sell it?