Arts and fashion “Passion for the arts has always been present in my household. My uncle was a painter and he made a living out of it. But my interest in art has developed mostly thanks to my mother. Since I was 4, she has been taking me to all kinds of different galleries and museum nights and she owns a small collection of paintings. So, growing up surrounded by art and taking advice from my family, I knew I was going to try to make a career in the art world.
“Besides fine arts, I really love fashion. I remember when I was 10, I loved looking at photographs and reading stories about fashion in the magazines. I dreamt about becoming an editor one day. I admired the work of Grace Coddington, a great creative director of American Vogue, and Tonne Goodman, the magazine’s fashion director. But the funny thing is that my family hates fashion, especially my mom. I don’t know where I got this passion from. Actually, it might be because she hates it.”
New Fashion Society “For students who are interested in fashion there was really no place to learn more about the industry, apart from the minor programme that bachelor’s students of Arts and Culture could take during their final year. New Fashion Society, a student association that strives to bridge the gap between university and the fashion industry, was launched five years ago by five RSM students.
“I am part of the Seminar Team and we are responsible for organising big case study events and seminar weeks. We invite professionals who work with luxury brands or in the fashion industry and ask them to present their companies and career opportunities for students. At first, the association was only business-oriented, but now we also work with international academics from fashion schools and host monthly lectures.”
Research “I discovered my interest in the economic aspect of the art market during my bachelor’s programme, so I also chose to make it the focus of my thesis. Following the direction of the minor in the fashion industry, I am doing a research on fashion designers in Amsterdam. High fashion in the Netherlands is not very developed, and it is a very closed-off community. This makes it very tough for up and coming designers to enter the industry. So my professor and I wondered how young professionals manage to survive, and thought this issue would be really interesting for research. Some of our findings show that businesses are not really eager to sponsor fashion projects; and in order to get a grant from the government, the key element is that you must have an extraordinary creative concept, while its commercial viability is not taken into consideration.”
Recommendations “What I would recommend to art lovers is to visit art fairs such as Art Rotterdam, or Art Amsterdam. The one in Maastricht, Tefaf, is especially amazing. You can find the best works of each art form inside one huge hall. Regarding fashion events, I think NFS is the only association that is organising things in Rotterdam. Another option is shop openings. These are usually a great occasion to get to know people in the fashion community.”