Fashion Biography

Wolfgang Joop, Fashion Designer


Fashion Designer Wolfgang Joop is one of Germany"s most recognized designers, and one with a unique signature. His last name, Joop, is a Dutch first name. He started to employ it as his trademark back in 1979. Instead of using his first name, he simply added an exclamation point, which has come to stand for innovation and creative energy. The brand that now bears his name comprises a universe of products for men, women and children with a turnover of DM 550 million ($305 million) in 1998. Today JOOP! stands for a modern attitude, eroticism and provocative style stemming from a wealth of ideas of its charismatic greater Wolfgang Joop .

Wolfgang Joop was born in Potsdam, Germany on November 18, 1944, close to the grounds of Sanssouci Palace. He began his fashion career when he and his former wife Karin entered a fashion contest in 1970 and managed to win the top three prizes. Prior to that Joop studied advertising psychology and art education. He worked as a free lance artist and held a professorship at the University of Fine Arts in Berlin.

Wolfgang Joop has two daughters, Jette born in 1968 and Florentine born five years later in 1973. He maintains residences in Monte Carlo, Hamburg and New York. He recently acquired an historic villa in Potsdam, his childhood home town, which is currently being renovated by noted architect Prof. Dr. Joseph Kleihues.

JOOP! GmbH is a solely licensed company. The first JOOP! fragrance as well as the first JOOP! men"s and women"s collection were launched in 1987. In 1988 JOOP! jeans made its market debut. Over the following years the product line was consistently enlarged and the JOOP! brand expanded with eyewear, shoes, accessories, leatherwear, body and knitwear, both for men and women. The JOOP! fashion world was finally rounded off with the introduction of the licenses for hoisery, kids, time, socks and jewelry. The JOOP! GmbH presented its first home collection, JOOP! living at the 1999 Franfurter Herbstmesse. Today, all partners collaborate closely with the designer Wolfgang Joop in order to ensure the consistent look and high quality for which JOOP! products are known. The JOOP! design studio as well as the management are located in Hamburg, Germany.

Wolfgang Joop is unceasingly in touch with international artists and photographers. His exchange and involvement with the latter, his curious outlook and the changing spirit of time are his sources of inspiration. JOOP! advertising campaigns reflect a unique and innovative signature. Wolfgang Joop collaborates closely with emerging photographers like Mario Sorrenti, Michelangelo di Battista, Dah Len, Inez van Lamsweerde, Sean Ellis and Vincent Peters. Likewise he has always worked with the most compelling models Stella Tennant, Donovan Leitch, Kristen McManemy, Tyson Beckford, Nadja Auermann, Amber Valetta, Kirsten Owen Alek, Wek, Markus Schenkenberg, Claudia Schiffer and Shalom Harlow. These are all faces that reflect his creative mood at one time or another.

8EYOND FASHION Wolfgang Joop is not only a designer but also an illustrator. His drawings and drafts have been featured in numerous exhibitions and are part of several museums" permanent collections. Wolfgang Joop himself collects contemporary art and sculptures. All of his homes contain eclectic pieces from contemporary artists such as Tamara de Lempika, Alexander Noll, Jeff Koons, Kenny Hunter, Gerhard Richter and Sam Tylor Woods as well as important paintings and furniture from the 1 7th, 1 8th and 1 gth centuries. Frequently he is called upon to create not only the hemlines but also the headlines. He writes editorial stories for news magazines like Der Spiegel, Stern and Zuricher Weltwoche. Wolfgang Joop is personally involved in two charitable organizations: Dunkeiziffer e.V., which helps sexually abused children and Hamburg Leuchtfeuer, a charity to support HIV sufferers.

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By Courtney Lynne
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