A celebration of Art

De Stijl movement celebrates 100 years and FACE A FACE pays tribute to the style that manifested graphic lines and vibrant colour-blocking.

Born out of a wish to both rebuild and reshape a changing society through art and design, De Stijl was founded by the Dutch artists Piet Mondrian and Theo Van Doesburg in 1917.

Inspired byParisian avant-garde and the cubist movement, the artists searched for harmony during war times  by reducing all forms into an abstract graphic look. Thoroughly shaped by grits of black, straight lines combined into squares or rectangles on a white surface, the style only allowed eye-catching blocks of primary colours such as red, blue and yellow into the works.

As a universal language De Stijl influenced both art, design and architecture, but the essence of the style is most famously captured in a series of paintings by Piet Mondrian.

The grit with its striking blocks of colours was revitalized in 1965 when Yves Saint Laurent created a dress collection inspired by the paintings. Maintaining the signature of the style, the dresses were revolutionary when merging art into fashion, and fashion into architecture with the construction of a completely seamless look.

100 years old and De Stijl is relevant as ever. Clean lines, graphic forms and colour blocking is trending in contemporary architecture as well as on the catwalk. But where Mondrian and his colleagues idealized uniformity in a strict system, a modern take on the style is all about standing out from the crowd. Minimalism gets sculptural and the rule to present-day colour blocking is that there is no rule. Eclecticism is key when FACE A FACE takes a modern spin on De Stijl. While staying true to a modernist core with a clean look and smooth transitions, the frames are not afraid to challenge the dogmas of the style, offering bold shapes and daring details in popping primary colours.