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Let yourself be charmed by an Italian
New York, NY March, 2008 â The Italian Trade Commission (ITC) as part of the campaign, Let yourself be charmed by an Italian, with Isabella Rossellini will host a cocktail party on March 11 from 6.30-8.00pm to celebrate the installation of âGlobal Travel, an exhibition of fashion created by students of Textile and Apparel Design from Rhode Island School of Design". The exhibit will be presented on the 3rd Floor at New Yorkâs prestigious Bergdorf Goodman specialty store. The exhibition will be on view from March 11th - March 14th, 2008.
The initiative, coordinated by the Italian Trade Commission in support of the Italian textile industry, has involved Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in a collaborative project with 22 Italian fabric and yarn mills. The project was a semester-long sponsored studio course for Apparel and Textiles seniors and graduate students. Ten RISD students from each department paired up in teams of two to design and create small collections inspired by the projectâs guiding theme: Global Travel.
The instructors of this unique course offered by RISD, in organization with the Italian Trade Commission, traveled to the Lombardy region of Italy in July to meet with the mills and spinners at their headquarters, and to showrooms and factories in Milan in Como in order to select fabrics and yarns. The materials were specifically chosen to provide a great range of materials that would inspire the 10 teams and allow them to fulfill their creative visions.
As Aniello Musella, Italian Trade Commissioner and Executive Director for the United States comments; âWe are honored to present this exhibit of young design talent and to offer these designers our support in their education. Italian mills and spinners offer some of the most innovative and creative fabrics and yarns available in the world, and are an indispensable resource for the global fashion industry. It is important that young designers have access to this unique opportunity to experiment with a wide selection of the highest quality materials during their training. The participating companies represent the top tier of Italian-made goods, with leaders in the fields of technical, menswear, and couture fabrics and yarns generously donating products for use in this studio.ââ
âWorking with the Italian Trade Commission and the fabric and yarn mills is a great opportunity for RISD to engage in two important areas of opportunity â fostering relationships with important industry partners and encouraging a collaborative design process among the students, using high-quality Italian-made productsâ said Liz Collins, assistant professor in RISDâs Textiles department.
âStudents are working from inspirations and concepts developed collaboratively during the summer, and will draw on and share their individual strengths in the areas of garment and textile design and creation, exploring and establishing a dialogue with their partners and discovering where each otherâs skills and ideas most suit the goals of the collection,â added Donna Gustavsen, head of RISDâs Apparel Design department. âThe pieces will be the result of a cross pollination of work and techniques, with each collection being a unique, balanced vision of two designers creating together and learning from each other.â
In addition to the New York exhibition, the results of the project were presented and celebrated at the RISD Museum of Art in Providence. The RISD Museum of Art event consisted of an evening fashion show that coincides with the opening of a new exhibition curated by Joanne Dolan Ingersoll, RISDâs new curator of Costume and Textiles.
For Apparel students, this course folds in to the senior level studio, where students learn to research, design and execute a coat as a key piece of a collection. Students are required to design and execute at least two companion pieces as well as the coat, integrating the coat into a cohesive collection through color, fabrication, shape, and interior details. Three-dimensional experimentation through draping on the form and structural exploration are used as essential parts of the design process.
For Textile students, this course functions as an application-driven, advanced level studio, where students learn how to design and create fabrics for apparel end uses, and gain exposure to the fashion field. Students are free to select a technique or group of techniques in which to develop the work, from dyeing, embroidery, embellishment, fabric manipulation, knitting, and weaving, to silk-screening and digitally printing fabrics. In addition, students who are taking the industrial knitting or Jacquard courses can choose to develop fabrics in those courses for this project.
Participating Italian vendors include Luigi Boggio Casero, Lanifico Puro Tessuto, Vitale Barberis Canonico, Serikos Collezioni & Tessili, Taroni, Seterie Argenti, Tesso, Gaetano Rossini Holding, Giancarlo Ones, Styletex, Botto Poala, Filatura di Crosa, Zegna Baruffa, Luigi Boldrini, Grignasco, Monticolor, BE.ME.VA and Lineapiu.