Class of 2020

Class of 2020 interviewed by Rolien Zonneveld. Collages by Sankrit Kulmanochawong

Missing class-of-2020 cover image

The Class of 2020

Showing remarkable resilience and creativity, #Classof2020 has adapted quickly to a rapidly changing industry and is showing what they wish the future of fashion should look like. And based on conversations we held with this selection of recently graduated students, the future looks bright. What struck us while looking through the work of the MBO and HBO academies – nine of whom you will meet below – was not only the students’ talent, but their desire to change the world for the better. 

Topics explored by these young designers include our consumption practices, our relationship to heritage and gender representation, among others. Preservation of craft is another preoccupation, and there is a sense of resourcefulness evident in many of the portfolios we saw. Curated under the theme ‘Rethink’, this selection features projects that challenge the status quo, critique the construct of the fashion industry and propose new solutions. 

Anna Jos Wetzel

ArtEZ Master Fashion Design,  

Practice Held in Common 

Country of origin: Germany 

By Anna Jos Wetzel

“I dedicated two entire years to the material linen after  I joined an initiative called The Linen Project. I inves tigated the entire process from “seed to shirt”. That  included farming flax – the plant from which linen is  made – in my family’s backyard, my own balcony, and  the fields of the project. I strongly believe that a local  linen production can benefit the environment, farmers,  designers, and consumers if the value chain is set up  in new ways. Together with the Linen Project I am still  figuring out what these new ways look like, in respect  to technical solutions and regarding awareness around  creation and labour.”

Jobert Tremus

Willem de Kooning Academy 

Country of origin: The Netherlands 

“Social matters and personal traumas are  always leading every design I make. I call  myself an ‘artivist’, which means that I tell  

a story through my art and fashion in order  to make people aware and to stimulate  activism. This year I decided to enroll in  a degree to become a teacher in the arts.  There’s a lack of diversity in the teacher  departments of fashion schools and I want  to be that change for future generations.”

Darwin Winklaar

By Darwin Winklaar

“My graduation collection is an homage to my mother  and Aruban culture. As a kid I would witness my  mother practice her cathartic rituals while cleaning the  house every Sunday. For my graduation presentation I  built an installation, I call it an altar, in which I repeated the rituals that she used to empower herself. With the altar I want to highlight how I found refuge and peace  within these beliefs provided by the women who raised  me. My work is an honest account of how I battled  mental health issues and the healing and reclaiming  of my own identity, culture and sense of spirituality  from a postcolonial perspective.”

Nemo Cheminée

ArtEZ University of the Arts Arnhem 

Country of origin: The Netherlands

By Nemo Cheminée

“Me and my classmate Benji Nijenhuis decided to slowly start building up something together; a fashion house we like to call The Nightmare Disorder. Using styling, photography and design we want to focus on the storytelling aspect of fashion. We want to reinvent  the fashion house. We want to still place ourselves  in the high fashion industry, but in a way that is sustai nable and aware. We don’t necessarily want to make  four collections a year, we want to hop from project  to project and be free in the choices we make.” 

Riemke Ipema

Zuyd-Maastricht Institute of Arts 

Country of origin: The Netherlands

By Riemke Ipema

“With my collection BROEKRIEMKE I explored how deconstructed secondhand jeans can be used to open up a discussion about binary thinking, gender and sexuality. The clothing I design should not be solely esthetically pleasing – I want them to tell a story or convey an opinion. With my designs I hope to spark  conversations, because I think talking about these  subjects lies at the start of a better world.” 

Annika van Amerongen

ROC Amsterdam 

Country of origin: The Netherlands 

By Annika van Amerongen

“My collection is related closely to farming life and  Dutch traditional dressing, which reminded me of my upbringing and surroundings as a child. The pandemic reinforced my perceptions of the industry as it were,  and it seems to have alerted more people about it as well. Personally, I believe fashion has been redundant for a long time, considering that most collections are reinventions of the house codes and rehashing time periods from not even twenty years ago. Also,  the fashion industry is a big contributor to the climate  crisis, which made me choose for a more sustainable  path – tailoring and custom design.”

Inge Vaandering

Royal Academy of Art The Hague 

Country of origin: The Netherlands

By Inge Vaandering

“In my work, I am interested in shifting the focus from sight to a more bodily perception. I like it to be a little bit off or unusual. Fabrics like cotton velvet are dyed and manipulated. Pieces of wool are treated with latex rubber, and crafted in a poncho. Thin paper is glued to cheesecloth and shaped as a parka, making a pleasant noise when you wear it. I try to find the  tension between garments, objects, and people to  provide a more imaginative and conscious perception  of our feelings and surroundings.

Ekaterina Ravina

AMFI – Amsterdam Fashion Institute 

Country of origin: Russia 

By Ekaterina Ravina

“I am concerned about deskillization and how massively people rely on technologies, so for my graduation  I decided to set up a one-man experiment and travel back in time in Russia. To the period when young girls needed to prepare their own dowry, which would prepare them mentally and practically for the future.  I viewed my graduation as a ritual of initiation and the final collection as my dowry, which I made with the use of analogue machines and reinvented crafts.  No artificial intelligence, no exploitation, only good-old  manpower and self-sufficiency.” 

Jeanne Hermans

Master Tailor Institute 

Country of origin: The Netherlands 

“My graduation project was a replica of a  Dior couture gown from 1947. It took me  430 hours to complete. As a tailor, I want  people to start paying a fair price. It takes  

time to deliver quality, which is ‘costly’.  I hope people will realize that in return  they get a piece that will last a long time,  and is fairly made.”

Published on Sep 2, 2020 , written by