Entertainer and enfant terrible. Fashion designer BERNHARD WILLHELM is a bit of both – but more importantly a congenial designer. After graduating from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp in 1998, the German joined forces with Jutta Kraus to set up his self-titled fashion label for launching four collections a year: two for men and two for women. Willhelm’s creations blend innovative cuts, cues from the contemporary world of popular culture with elements from the sports and streetwear scene – while always injecting a touch of irony and absurdity. The results have won him a range of fashion accolades, including the ANDAM Award (Association Nationale pour le Développement de la Mode) bestowed by the French Minister of Culture in 2005; furthermore his designs are regularly featured in group and solo shows around the world. BERENHARD WILLHELM has in addition made stage outfits for Pop singer Björk’s 2007 world tour as well as theatre costumes for the Deutsches Theater in Berlin. Together with artists Carsten Fock and Dirk Bonn he has created non-commercial works that have been exhibited in galleries in Berlin and Stockholm and the Biennale in Athens.
Bernhard Willhelm (born 12 November 1972 in Ulm) is a German fashion designer. Bernard Willhelm studied fashion design at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, during which he assisted Walter van Beirendonck, Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood and Dirk Bikkembergs. In 1998, he established his namesake fashion house, together with Jutta Kraus. They debuted their first womenswear collection in 1999 and their first menswear collection was introduced in 2000.
Bernhard feels complete freedom in his designs without being tied down to trends, conventions or turning over sales which is clearly seen in his ability to create clothes with true emotion that have a voice of their own. Furthermore he doesn’t take himself or the fashion industry too seriously, exhibited in his seasonal shows which are exaggerated, over the top, theatrical and most importantly, fun.