Steel trees form a reference to the Garden of Eden; white refers to virginal innocence; black is for the lost paradise: a subtle feel for mythology and themystical is seen in all the work of interior designer Maurice Mentjens. He combined three small spaces and then divided them again into yin and yang. Back to the origins of fashion: “the mother of all the arts”.
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The existing shop soon proved to be too small, and was extended last year with the addition of a neighbouring premises. The long, narrow garden in between the buildings was given a glass roof. By breaking through windows and doors in the side walls, three interconnected spaces were created with seven passageways. Mentjens created a division between the women’s and men’s sections precisely in the middle of the central glass-roofed space, starting with the floor. One half ofthe floor is pure white, the other jet black: colours representing yin and yang, the feminine and the masculine. Elegant versus rugged, like the intangible, graceful world of Venus and the earthy, black smithy of Vulcan, her husband, in Roman mythology.
The connection between the spaces is made by two sales counters, half protrudinginto the glass-roofed space and half into the white or black areas. Thanks toan ingenious anchoring system in the wall, the blocks are almost magically suspended in the spaces. Only the very ends are subtly supported by aplexiglass foot.
Garden of Eden
Particular eye catchers in the design are the steel trained trees in the glass-roofed space. They make handy clothes racks, but are primarily a reference to the lostparadise. The former inner courtyard immediately conjured up associations with the Garden of Eden in the mind of Maurice Mentjens. “It’s the biblical story of creation, in which Adam and Eve are free of sin in the beginning in the Garden of Eden. They only start to clothe themselves after their Fall, when they had eaten of the forbidden fruits from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and become aware of their nakedness. They first clothed themselves with fig leaves and later with clothes made for them by God from animal skins. In this regard,you could see the design of clothes as the first creative deed in humanity andthus as the mother of all the arts.” So says an impassioned Mentjens, who sees fashion as a fully-fledged art form.