FLORENCE - One of the main attractions of Pitti Uomo fair is to have every season a great exhibition placed in one of the historic buildings and spaces of the city. In 2011, for example, the Trussardi brand celebrated its 100 years with the exhibition of their collection of contemporary art at the Stazione Leopolda, while the American artist Andrea Zittel was invited to show her works in the Palazzo Pitti in 2010.
This season it was Stone Island brand who opened an exhibition to celebrate its 30th anniversary last Tuesday (19.06). Known for its highly sophisticated study of fabrics (the owner of the brand has worked with NASA scientists in the past), Stone Island was founded in Italy in 1982. Since then they conquered and maintained their status through their utility jackets for all kinds of climates and situations.
The exhibition is curated by the British stylists Simon Foxton and Nick Griffiths. They divided the show in 10 thematic sections: “Coatings, Treatments and Dyeing Techniques”, “Chromatic Room”, “Steam Room”, “Stone Island Shadow Project”, “Meshes”, “Knit Research”, “Paper Room”, “Special Projects”, “Thermosensitive Room” and “Motion Scrapbook”.
It’s amazing the research on fabrics developed by the brand over the years. Among the 200 pieces in display there are parkas made with heat-sensitive fabrics that change colour according to temperature. They started to developed and sell these pieces as early as 1988. Or there are jackets made of lightweight fabrics that look like paper but is as resistant as metal. Or reflective textiles that glow in the dark (marketed since 1991). The exhibition comes at the right time, giving context to a men’s fashion trend seen on the catwalks this season: reflective and high tech fabrics.
Below there is an interesting video with the owner and creative director of Stone Island, Carlo Rivetti, presenting the company’s headquarters in Modena and talking about development of exclusive fabrics:
“Stone Island 30”
When: Until 7th of July 2012
Where: Stazione Leopolda, Florence
MARILYN – MUSEO SALVATORE FERRAGAMO
Another exhibition that also opened during Pitti Uomo was “Marilyn” at the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum, where the headquarters of the company are also based. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the death of the American actress.
Mr Salvatore began his career making shoes for Hollywood stars and even collaborated with Marilyn when they were still alive. Shoes and dresses of the iconic actress, like that designed by William Travilla for the movie “The Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” (pictured), are on display.
When: Until 28th of January 2013
Where: Museo Salvatore Ferragamo, Florence
Photos: Hermano Silva and Stone Island/courtesy © 2012