Since she was little, Jo De Visscher [°1976] is bitten by the fashion bug. She starts working with scraps of fabric which she turns into full silhouettes for her Barbie dolls and gets her mother to knit matching miniature sweaters.
While growing up, she sews her first skirts on an old sewing machine without having any formal training.
She studies maths and science and, as a teenager, becomes fascinated by an article on the restoration of the frescos in the Sistine Chapel. The article has such an impact on her that she decides to enrol in the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Ghent, where she studies painting and specializes in restoration of contemporary art. She graduates in ’99, learns the ropes at the S.M.A.K., MuHKA and Kunstmuseum Bonn and finally starts her own restoration company (contemporary art conservation) in Brussels.
She’s asked to collaborate on the exhibition ‘Mutilate?-Vermink?’ — curated by Walter Van Beirendonck — at the MuHKA and this project rekindles her passion for fashion. Jo follows her heart, says goodbye to restoration and hello to fashion and clothing. She does an intensive course in pattern making, learns proper sewing properly this time and studies fashion design at night school. She also freelances for the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp.
In 2007, her final year show generates such a buzz that she decides to design and market her own ‘jodevisscher’ collection.