anouk portrait

On the last day of the fashion design work shop with Pascale Gatzen (see article Part I) we had the chance to have a nice talk with one of the facilitators of the learning community, ANOUK BECKERS, a student graduated from art school. Let’s get to know more about this dynamic Dutch girl and her opinions on fashion and creation.

Can you speak a little about yourself? What did you study and your professional experiences?

I’ve just graduated half a year ago from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam. I graduated from two separated departments, the Fashion Department and the Textile (TXT) Department. Fashion is for training future designers whereas Textile is more about developing artistic vision. Now I am starting my own brand: aNOUK BECKERS, which is the continuation of my graduation work. It is a modular system for garments. The idea of garments as unfinished objects is my starting point. There is always a possibility to change the silhouette with my garments. So it is always an on-going process. I would like to see it as a research.

work of Anouk photo by Eva Beeftink

So up till now, it is your most important project, right?

Yes! I graduated from two different departments with this one work as I developed it into artistic world and design at the same time. I made many pattern pieces, like different parts of garments, so they are unfinished. I invited people to choose the pieces and combine them by themselves, like puzzle game. I am amazed at how they had fun during the whole process.

I want to offer a new perspective of the fashion industry to people and to establish equality in the relationship between the designer and the consumer, the idea of co-production. I would like to collaborate with my clients and let them create and play. I also prefer the idea of series to collections because I don’t want to tell my clients to wear the garments in winter or summer, it can be at any time, in any form, as they want.

– Why did you choose to specialize in fashion, or maybe in your case more in art ?

I am in both domains, art and fashion. Actually, I studied social psychology before because I am interested in how human beings related to each other and the society. However, after a three years’ study, I feel that I am not fully satisfied with just using my brain since it is a discipline which needs a lot of thinking. From when I was little, I always need to make something, to create. I think I’ll be much happier if my profession is to create. So after finishing the psychology, I went to study in art school. Now I feel very satisfied to be able to create and use the thinking at the same time.

-Let’s talk a little about the workshop. How did you join this program and why?

It was Pascale (Gatzen) who had the idea to give this workshop. I got e-mails from two persons I know and then I contacted Pascale. Before coming to Marseille, we met in the group for three or four times to do planning in Holland. We thought about what would be important for us to tell you and to share. Finally, all these ideas come up with a series of exercices and things to do. Personally, the most important reason for coming here is that for me being creative and know how to create is the most valuable thing in terms of how I developed myself, it is such a gift. I thought it would be amazing if I can help you guys to discover it by looking around yourself and using your own experiences to express. Another important reason is to facilitate the communication between creators and managers, like between you and me. My goal is to show that fashion is much more than consuming, like this workshop offers an alternative thinking of the system.

As today is the last day, how do you feel about the work shop?

For me, the whole experience is so beautiful, being in the community, feeling the energy and sharing. I am very happy to have achieved the personal goal: to create an honest and open space. We learnt from each other a lot. Two weeks ago we didn’t even know each other while now we work so closely together.

anouk workshop 1

-Finally, what about your future project?

In short term, I think I will spend a couple of years to develop my own work, to realize my dream. More generally, trying to figure it out and what fashion is at the same time.

Good luck Anouk!


Interwiew and Text: Zhu Yiyun

Photo credits Chloé Nivet and Eva Beeftink