FADE (NOT) to BLACK: Barbara i Gongini

Browsing Copenhagen Fashion Week for a best-of post, I met these beautiful creatures by Barbara i Gongini and instantly fell in love… dark, mysterious, kinda maybe f*cked-up love, but love nonetheless pure and as unconditional as it is unconventional. The tailoring and layering is so fine-odd-fun that an initial impulse to categorize this as mere emo-hot-mess transforms into a desire to try it on, relinquish one’s stalemate identities, morph into a more fluid vision of self and reappear elsewhere more opportune. The existential playfulness of misleadingly dichotomous slogans “down on my knees” and “never on my knees” is a refreshing reminder that any position in life can be perceived/presented as a Choice with all the personal agency inherent therein. These are (in)visibility cloaks for the alter egos.

Official page: “The understated yet innovative collections are simplistic with subtle intricacies. A meticulous creative process can be doted as rather numerical, where design is based on continuous evolvement rather than sheer renewal and instant dismissal.” Please, allow me to translate this back into English… It’s fucking amazing. Barbara i Gongini is amazing. Wiki-dictionary: “causing wonder; possessing uniquely wonderful qualities.” You know what else makes me wonder… Whose job is it to separate garments into menswear and womenswear for the brand’s webstore? Whoever is tasked with that must understand gender expression in nuances too subtle for me to fathom. Nevertheless, my fall-winter 2015 wish-list just got a few looks darker and my dream-roster of designers to know better got a brilliant name longer.

For another fascinating insight into post-gender couture discourse, check out Patrick Salonga presentation at TOM*/Toronto! Also, please meet these folks’ Russian cousins from Pirosmani family/brand 🙂

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