BKRK Textile x MoMu

Bokrijk has surprised everyone with the "Branded by Bokrijk" (BKRK) project which highlights the skills of yesterday, today and tomorrow in the Open-Air Museum. With a brand-new exhibition based aroundtextiles, Bokrijk is creating the next chapter of the story. "In this exhibition, the famous fashion designer Tim Van Steenbergen provides his take on the historic textile collection at Bokrijk, after having created a collection for the employees who work at Bokrijk.

Loom in action

Craftsmanship is a central theme in the exhibition, with a prominent role given to 19th century loom from Ulbeek on which the designer had almost 36 metres of fabric woven to be used in producing the Bokrijk Collection. Topics such as identity and consumption are also dealt with. It allows visitors to think about how we relate to our clothes today.

The collection of historic clothing and textiles from Bokrijk is drawn from the 2,000 items that formed the starting point of the exhibition. The majority consist of everyday rural clothing from the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, including some unique shawls, regional headwear, underclothes and mother's hidden purse, and from objects that were necessary for producing these items, such as looms and spinning wheels. Unlike clothes worn in towns or haute couture, very few complete outfits have survived from the past. Making clothes took time time and effort. Fashion were much slower to develop in the past and the fabrics were much more hard-wearing. People literally wore their clothes till they were threadbare and then made use of them for other purposes. Even the traces left on the clothes, hinting at what they were used for, are of great interest.

Exhibition BKRK Textiel Bokrijk

BKRK Textile is a story about working with a number of partners. Frieda Sorber from the Fashion Museum Antwerp contributed in many ways, including determining the items to include and presenting the Bokrijk clothing collection. And during the Summer Festival, every day in July and August at the Open-Air Museum, several craftspeople will display their contemporary interpretation of textile crafts to the general public. The Fashion Museum Antwerp will also be making a guest appearance on 11 July and 15 August at the Open-Air Museum with the children's "Soft Textile Collages to Kiss" workshop.

You can visit the BKRK Textile exhibition in and around the Hooghuis Tessenderlo (Kempen museum section) during the opening hours of the Open-Air Museum, Tuesday to Sunday, from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm. Closed on Mondays, except public holidays and in July and August. The museum is open up to and including 21 October. More info www.bokrijk.be