Along with founding the Flanders Fashion Institute and the ModeNatie forum in Belgium Linda Loppa, one of the most recognised figures in international fashion education, spent over twenty-five years as head of the fashion department at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Oft mentioned in conjunction with the ‘Antwerp Six’ and their pioneering stature within the international fashion community, Loppa is credited with having spearheaded a number of initiatives such as Mode 2001 to help raise the profiles of the Belgian industry and in 2002 was awarded an honorary medal by the Flemish parliament in recognition of her work. In 2007 Loppa was appointed as dean of the Polimoda International Institute of Fashion Design & Marketing in Florence, where she has overseen the institute’s establishment as a leading international school for design.
An alumnus of the Royal Academy, Loppa initially pursued a career in design and fashion buying prior to accepting a faculty position. Following her graduation in 1971, Loppa secured a position as a designer at a local Belgian outerwear company specialising in the production of raincoats before joining a friend in 1978 to launch a high-end boutique.
In 1981 Loppa began teaching at the Academy, simultaneously running her own namesake boutique where she showcased clothes from avant-garde designers such as Jean-Paul Gaultier, Helmut Lang and Claude Montana. In 1991 Loppa joined the commercial team at Dries Van Noten, helping the young label with its distribution and marketing.