Liesbeth Sterkenburg looks to different cultures and subcultures for inspiration in her work. Once a subject snares her interest, she loses herself completely in seeking and discovering the history behind it. She then takes these impressions and uses them to create a new world, built from her own perspective.
One example of a narrative collection is Sterkenburg’s graduate collection, for which she formed her own gang, NEWSTREET EXPO’S, inspired by Japanese mafia and motorcycle gangs the Yakuza and Bosozoku.
Liesbeth created her own gang, but one made up of rebel artists: the NEWSTREET EXPO’S. These creatives spend their nights on the streets, filling empty city walls with their own art. They use their bodies as a canvas, proudly wearing their own art and their own symbols. The hand is the NEWSTREET EXPO’S symbol, as they use a range of hand signals to communicate with one another. Every collection Liesbeth takes her gang, “THE NEW STREET EXPO’S”, and puts them in a different time and environment. Imagining how they will act and what they will look like.
Prints are an important part of Liesbeth’s work; they’re what tells the story. She makes good use of screen prints, digital prints and embroidery. She sees the body as the blank canvas upon which her works of art are displayed. Liesbeths designs are characterized by oversized pieces with functional details that can be worn by men and women alike. After earning her two-year diploma from the Vrije School in Haarlem, Liesbeth spent a year in Berlin. While she was studying at the Von Erlenbach Kunstschule, she discovered her love of the liberal arts. Just like her mother before her, Liesbeth then continued her studies at ArtEZ in Arnhem, a course that allowed her to combine fashion and liberal arts in her final year. After graduating in 2016, Liesbeth was nominated for the Frans Molenaar prize.
After this Liesbeth freelanced for several brands and showed three ensembles as part of Future Generation at Mercedes-Benz FashionWeek Amsterdam. She also presented a look made in collaboration with Walt Disney to celebrate the opening of their latest film, Beauty and the Beast.
2011 – Art Academie Michael Von Erlenbach Berlin
2016 – Graduated BA Fashion Design from ArtEZ Institute of Arts, Arnhem, NL
2016 – Nominee Frans Molenaar Award
2016 – “PRESS PLAY TO CONTINUE” Expo at Dutch Design Week
2017 – Showing during Amsterdam Fashionweek – Future generation
2017 – Showing during Amsterdam Fashionweek – Outfit Walt Disney
2017 – Showing NEWSTREET EXPO’S SS18 at Amsterdam Fashionweek