Van der Sangen Collection


Art matters because your imagination can color your world. Swen Van der Sangen and Creativity. His father, a truck driver, often visited printing houses and would take paper for him. When his brother played football, he built furniture and houses with paper and cardboard. However, he would first work in psychiatry. A nice profession, he noticed during his internship, but his internship supervisor said what he already knew: he was made for a creative profession. So he went to the school of fine arts where a world opened up to him. “I belonged there. Where I got lower scores in high school, I suddenly got the best scores of the class. From that moment on I can use my indomitable creativity and at the same time I make people happy. When I've made something and notice that it arrives at someone else, see a twinkle in their eyes, that's a kick." He soon heard about Mucho Gusto through a colleague of his friend. Not the underpants brand, as he first thought, but a then still small company from Gronsveld that makes exclusive clothing from high-quality silk fabrics and materials. He has now designed the prints there for thirteen collections in a row. “The nice thing about what I do is that everything is measurable. People in the office can't show you exactly what they've done at the end of the day, I can just slide my designs right under your nose.” Together with owner Monique van Berkel, Swen now devises about two hundred to three hundred designs per season at the world known fashion label Mucho Gusto, a difference with many clothing brands that usually purchase prints created in China. “I was setting up a database with my designs when friends with a shop in Maastricht asked me to hang some of my designs there. I hadn't thought about hanging my work on the wall as well. I started with three prints, they sold quickly and that's how it went. With the money I earned with it, I could always make new, slightly more luxurious work.” He characterizes his style as "rough lines that are colored in a refined, almost therapeutic way." Not a matter of long-get-home. “How often my friend hears that I'm going to the garage to continue working on a painting. Don't ruin it, I see him thinking. For me it often just doesn't feel good enough. I rarely regret afterwards.”


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