previews

  • Walter Van Beirendonck

    Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
    Museumpark 18-20
    September 11, 1998–November 15, 1999

    Belgian designers tend to look to the street for inspiration. Walter Van Beirendonck does his prêt-à-porter countrymen one better in combining youth style and the futurism thats become de rigueur in Japanese design. Gathered under the aegis of “Wild and Lethal Trash,” his fall/winter collection is being impresarioed by Boijmans design curator Thimo to Duits, with a catalogue including contributions from International Herald-Tribune fashion writer Suzy Menkes and artist Orlan. Along with Beirendoncks homage to adolescent knuckle-dragging couture (“Cybercombat style for space skaters”), the highlight looks to be the designers skaterati line of kids clothes for “warrior boys” and “wizzkid girls.”

  • Constant: New Babylon

    Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art
    Witte de Withstraat 50
    November 22, 1998–January 10, 1999

    In 1956, the Dutch painter Constant began an architectural and urban design project that he pursued obsessively for nearly twenty years. The New Babylon imagined a set of urban interruptions that would provide variable “atmospheres” to serve the new Homo ludens. Its thematics of freedom, pleasure, and programmatic flexibility continues to haunt architecture, and its multimedia presentation—drawings, paintings, models, films, and radio broadcasts—still amazes. Initiated by Witte de With director Bartemeo Mari and curated by architectural scholar Mark Wigley, this exhibition gathers an unprecedented range of artifacts to rethink Constants significance. The catalogue includes a selection of Constants own writings, many never before published.