Almost every AMFI student has already been confronted with the stereotypes that fashion students are often associated with. But we all know that fashion universities are much more than places where we only talk about dressing and shopping. Instead, fashion schools, such as AMFI, provide an inspiring working environment where lots of diverse talents work together and share their unique ideas.
Second year Fashion and Branding student Esther Kroes showcases this diversity of fashion students. In her exhibition “MOW – Manner of Working”, which will take place at the byAMFI studio this Saturday, the 14th of April, she offers us an insight into the passionate creative working process and vision of 40 AMFI students. Today, I had the chance to meet Esther and talk with her about the idea behind this exhibition and her own motivation.
Article by first year International Fashion & Branding student Janna Hämpke.
Esther Kroes by Ecaterina Vasilieva, second year Fashion and Branding student.
Hi Esther, thank you for coming and taking your time for this interview just a few days before the exhibition. I would love to know more about the background of this exhibition. What did inspire you to organise it?
I started with this project when I worked for amfi.nl as a social media editor. I came up with the idea to photograph AMFI students to showcase their personal world and show what they look like. The idea was to break through the stereotypical visions of AMFI students. On instagram, I asked AMFI students if they would like to present their outfit of the day, and other students to take photos of them. The first photographer I worked with was Anna Dovgopolaya, a first year Fashion and Design student. While the first project was going on, I saw the photos of Anna and I was surprised by the high quality of her work – everything looked so good. I was convinced that I have to do more with these amazing photos. So I got the idea to showcase them in an exhibition. I talked to Flora van den Berg, the editor-in-chief of amfi.nl and the guys from the byAMFI studio and we made the decision to organise an exhibition in collaboration with byAMFI. That was the start of this project. With the help and creative energy of four Editorial team members of amfi.nl, Emma Smit, Leonie Miller-Aichholz, Marissa Muijselaar and Zoë Akihary, I finally created the exhibition during the last month. So, my very first idea turned out into a big collaboration.
How would you describe the core idea of the final exhibition?
First, the core idea was to showcase the diversity of AMFI students. But then I decided to focus on their thoughts and ambition as well. In the end, the exhibition is all about showcasing the process of creating thinking of AMFI students. I want to highlight their vision, mission, and passion, as I think that these are the key drivers for successful work. The most important thing of a person is their energy, their spirit, their ambition, their thinking process and not specifically their skills. You can always develop your skills over time but your energy and your vision are the things which are the fuel to start with. And that’s exactly what I want to present in the exhibition. Moreover, I want to create a networking event where AMFI students can meet up and see what other students’ potentials are. I also would like to show the talents of fashion students to the outside world. We, as fashion students, are more than dressing well and shopping. I think that we are diverse creative thinkers who have a passion for a broad variety of subjects and who love to research, explore the world around us and to educate ourselves. It is time to showcase that diversity and our distinctive energetic characteristics !
Would you mind giving us a small glimpse into the program of Saturday?
On Saturday, we will organise some panel discussions about the creative working process, creative thinking and the competitiveness of the fashion industry. We would like to connect students to each other and to show the world where our true potentials are and what keeps us going on. Some AMFI students will give us a glimpse into their way of thinking and into their way of managing their own work. We also showcase their personal process they do besides AMFI on the walls. Some of them are already creative directors or brand directors and it is interesting to see how they manage their creative process. The focus of the exhibition lies on showcasing the creative process behind the end result – something that is hardly discussed while there is put so much energy, effort and emotions in. We also display a video where five AMFI students talk about their vision, mission and their point of view on competitiveness in the fashion industry. Moreover, we will publish a magazine which deals with the personal story of 40 AMFI students. Saturday will be a nice time to meet each other and to talk to each other. We want to show that we are talented colleagues, not competitors. We showcase the beauty of working together on an emotional and creative level! There is a DJ, there are drinks and hopefully, there is a great atmosphere. Everybody is welcome to join us.
The exhibition “MOW- Manner of Working” will take place at the byAMFI store on Saturday, the14th of April, from 12am to 9pm.