Spectacle holder in leather with Swarovski details, handmade by Fong Leng 2015 - 2021
- About the artist
Fong Leng was born as Carla Maria Fong Leng Tsang (Rotterdam, 13 August 1937) and is a Chinese-Dutch fashion designer. In1969 she opened her first boutique in the Drugstore on the Nieuwendijk in Amsterdam. In 1971 she moved to a larger shop in the P.C. Hooftstraat and called it Studio Fong Leng, where she became a draw for the jet set. She became best known for her extravagant cloaks. Fong Leng's most famous client was Mathilde Willink, the ex-wife of the Dutch magical-realist painter Carel Willink.
At the Academy of Fine Arts in Rotterdam she studied photography. She then ran a photo press agency for five years together with her ex-husband Herbert Behrens. They made all kinds of photos for various Dutch newspapers. In 1968 she started working as a photographer and fashion and design designer for the jersey manufacturer Ross International in Hoofddorp. During this work she discovered her affinity with fabrics and clothing.
Fong Leng's creations are made of leather, suede, silk, marabou feathers and fur. Favorite techniques: appliqué, incrustation, matelassé, smocking and plissé.
The designs often have a figurative image. High-society and extravagant women such as Mathilde Willink and Kate Bush wore Fong Leng's clothes. The coats were given names like Straalma ntel, Nijinski, Bird of Paradise and Leopard Cloak.
Besides self-made designs, Studio Fong Leng also sold creations by various international designers such as Zandra Rhodes, Ossie Clark and Alice Pollock. Studio Fong Leng's concept was something that had never been done before. In her shop, she poured champagne and handed out snacks. Once a year, the studio organised fashion shows with dancing mannequins and loud pop music blaring from the speakers. The first two shows were held in the shop itself, and later, when things got busier, at larger venues, such as the Beurs van Berlage, the Tropenmuseum and De Mirandabad.
In 1975, the Centraal Museum in Utrecht was the first to include a design by Fong Leng in its collection. The museum bought it directly from the studio - no one had worn it before - and paid 10,000 guilders for it at the time.Today several museums have work by (Studio) Fong Leng in their collections, including the Amsterdam Museum, Museum Rotterdam, and Gemeentemuseum The Hague. Throughout the years there have been several exhibitions devoted to Fong Leng's designs.
At present Fong Leng designs many applied art, interior products: from wall hangings of coloured leather on a silk background to leather sofas and lighting.
Also new is a series of necklaces, with antique motifs and a contemporary touch.