BIOGRAPHY OF WOLFGANG JOOP
Wolfgang Joop was born in Potsdam, Germany, 18th November 1944.
Wolfgang Joop studied advertising psychology at the University of Braunschweig.
He was later invited to become an honorary professor of fashion design at the Universität der Künste in Berlin.
He began his fashion career working with his former wife Karin when in 1968 they were awarded all three first prizes in a design competition. Professionally he had been working as both a fashion illustrator and journalist and as a freelance designer for fashion houses in Italy, France and Germany.
Wolfgang Joop achieved international success in 1978, when he showed his first fur collection, which the New York Times, among other publications, honored him as the "Prussian Designer."
The first collection to carry his name was a fur collection presented in 1979. The label and company JOOP! were created in 1981 and was recognised for its provocative collections as well as for its internationally award-winning fragrances. In early 1982 Joop showed his first prêt-àporter women's collection, followed by his first men's collection in 1985.
Two years later, with the launch of his first perfume collection, he made his name a trademark, with capital letters to symbolize energy along with an exclamation mark. Clothes, shoes, jewelry, eyeglasses and perfume were immediately available under this brand. The "JOOP!" label became available for licensing, and Joop's company no longer produced any of its own goods for sale.
Since 1997, Joop's products have been sold through JOOP! GmbH with the exception of Parfum JOOP!, which was sold to Coty/Lancaster in 1991 followed by licensee contracts.
In 1998 Wolfgang Joop sold 95% of his stake in the JOOP! GmbH to Wünsche AG and sold the remaining 5% in July 2001. This ended his involvement with JOOP!
In 2003 Wolfgang Joop founded WUNDERKIND.
Wolfgang Joop first presented WUNDERKIND with the Fall/Winter collection 2004 in Berlin to an audience of distinguished press and retail guests. WUNDERKIND had its international debut in September 2004 when WUNDERKIND was invited by the CFDA to premier the collection at New York Fashion week before repositioning the label and moving to show in Paris in 2006.
He is one of Germany's most recognized home grown designers, and one with a unique signature style in all that he does. Essentially, Wolfgang Joop’s fashion is about suspense and surprise and fantasy, not about rules. Flirting with incongruity, he mixes traditional clothing with new fashion.
With the creation of WUNDERKIND he has built the only German fashion house of its kind. A fashion house which is not a personification and does not bend to negative overtures of fashion commercialism but respects and creates clothes and fashion at its best. Each sample collection is designed, created and produced in house in the Villa Rumpf, Potsdam, Germany.
Wolfgang Joop is celebrated for his many artistic talents; his drawings and illustrations are included in the permanent collections of several contemporary art museums. The Hamburg Museum of Applied Art houses over one hundred of his works spanning his career. In 1995 the Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg held a retrospective exhibition of his works in the field of graphic art. His most recent exhibition at the Kunsthaus Avantgarde, Apolda, titled “Stillstand des Flüchtigen” (Still in Motion), celebrated his most significant illustrations from 1960-2000 and travelled to New York, Zürich, Vienna and Berlin. In May 2003 Wolfgang Joop’s illustrations were a feature exhibition at Sotheby’s auction house in New York. In Spring 2009 selected works of Wolfgang Joop have been shown in the Kunsthalle Rostock. The exhibition was no retrospective but a current reflection of his work, showing fashion, sketches, drawings, textile installations and sculptures. Another exhibition was shown in Seoul/ Korea in February / March 2010.
Wolfgang Joop is a distinguished collector of fine art, photography and antiques. His significant collection ranges from paintings and furniture dating from the seventeenth-century to the present day. His collection includes twentieth-century works by Jeff Koons, Tim Noble & Sue Webster, Alexandre Noll, Perriand, Royère, Prouvé and Tamara de Lempicka, which he sold in two Sotheby’s auctions in May 2009.
He has renovated two important villas in his hometown of Potsdam. Both the Villa Metz, now Villa Wunderkind and his home, and the Villa Rumpf, previously owned by the artist Fritz Rumpf and acted as a salon for the German expressionists, have been thoughtfully restored in Wolfgang Joop’s eclectic style.