032c x WHITE MILAN: The “Passages” Exhibition Guide
Milan February 24 - 27, 2022
This Milan Fashion week, 032c partners for the first time with White Show, showcasing a selection of seven emerging and established labels that represent the current cultural Zeitgeist and the evolution of fashion. Considering each one’s unique and critical relationship to the past and future of the industry, the project takes place in and around the Circle Room in an installation designed with Dimore Studio. Seven corridors lead to a central mirrored space conceived as a hidden club where the selected exhibitors and their individual styles and approaches converge.
The result merges the atmospheres of both 032c’s and White’s home cities, and mirrors how we come together and intermix in lived experience – whether to the pulse of music on a brutalist Berlin dance floor, or beneath the glass arches of a historical Milan shopping arcade.
The unprecedented collaboration is equally a showcase of White's commitment to supporting creativity, experiment, and growth across the field and the globe, examining both tradition and accelerated change within the fashion industry.
Scroll to read the guide to the exhibition, titled "Passages," and to discover the brands featured.
Curated by 032c, “Passages” brings a selection of seven brands together for a collective presentation inspired by the grand shopping arcades developed alongside the modernization and cultural development of the European city – and by the experimental spaces created by their destruction.
Conceived for this year’s edition of WHITE and its 2022 theme, “Sign of the Times,” PASSAGES takes place within and surrounding “The Circle Room”: a mirrored space created by Dimore Studio as a Berlinified “032c Club” envisioned through the heart of Milanese design. Accessible through seven corridors – one for each featured brand – this place of gathering is a literal and figurative reflection upon the notion of circularity and non-linearity. The same theme is central to each label’s identity and philosophy, in diverse and interconnecting ways: cycles are considered in space and in time, through the archive and through material recycling. Each revolution serves a unique dream of possibility that defies linear ideas of progress, seasonality, and trends, in favor of doctrines of immersion, interconnectivity, renewal, and eternal revolution.
PASSAGES features work by 44 Label Group, Acne Studios, Entire Studios, Kasia Kucharska, Lecavalier, Phipps, and S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA.
THE CIRCLE ROOM
“The arcade is a city, a world in miniature,” wrote Walter Benjamin in his Arcades Project (1927 – 1940), an unfinished collage of fragmented texts inspired by the shopping arcades of the 19th century European city. Milan is home to perhaps the most impressive arcades on the continent, where these ornate spaces connect the city’s fashion industry to the urban experience. Taken as a symbol of connectivity, the arcade provides a framework for exploring the intersection of fashion and society, retail and experience, identity and the city. It is a place to showcase the evolving styles with which we process and move through time and space, through our past and present engagement with the world.
Created for PASSAGES, Dimore Studio’s “032c Club” conflates the Milanese modern arcade and the postmodern techno venue: the place of gathering, connection, and creation for which 032c’s hometown of Berlin is known. A “street of lascivious commerce” where the boundaries between the visitor and the merchandise disappear, during the industrial revolution the shopping arcade became a center of fashion and social life, a gathering place, a refuge from the elements and the chaos of the city, and a space in which consumers began to think of themselves as a community. The arcade, like the club, is in Benjamin’s words a place uniquely “adapted to arousing desires” – a temple “consecrated to the intoxication of great cities.”
In the Circle Room, the immersive and illuminated experience of the arcade becomes a conceptual backdrop: a point of convergence for non-linear corridors of movement between creative and commercial spheres, and a conduit for limitless exchange of ideas.
Like the landscape of the modern city, no fashion product, collection, or trending moment is ever truly “finished”: each is part of a constellation of creative production that is in constant fl ux. In the digital age, the divisions between art and commerce, experience and retail have dissolved, and old materials and established techniques propel us toward the new. PASSAGES references the ever-evolving, never-complete nature of creative process, of how we populate commercial and communal space – and experience time itself through our designs. The brands invited inhabit a fusional fi eld of fashion, evident in how they make connections between disparate disciplines, inspirations, and methods of production. Garments function as vehicles for ideas and community alongside music, art, architecture, and technology as mediums for research and thought.
Founded by Berlin DJ Max Kobosil, 44 LABEL GROUP makes clothing infused with the creative energy of music production and the catalyzing social capacity of the club.
Using sculptural textiles and applied material technique, Sterling Ruby’s S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA. intermixes couture and contemporary art on an immersive, multi-disciplinary scale.
Inspired by traditional leatherwork, LECAVALIER’s signature jersey weaving technique crosses over between fabrics and garments, epochs and genres, evolving and becoming more complex – perhaps, more personal – with each iteration.
KASIA KUCHARSKA’s futuristic vision is a historical material study – specifically, into lace – adapted to the synthetic fabric of our world today, and to the flexibility of shape and context required of our individual cultural performances in the 21st century.
The work of ENTIRE STUDIOS is the result of an expansive, creative-directorial vision, laser-focused into key forms, functions, and palettes (all broadly defined, and always malleable).
PHIPPS fuses urban and natural landscapes with new technologies and a sustainable approach to clothing inspired by archival memories and the textiles, textures, and tissues that bear witness to – and long outlast – intimate and shared experience.
ACNE STUDIOS both prefaced and continues to exemplify the 360-degree approach increasingly called for by contemporary fashion: its universe straddling ready-to-wear and content, concept and applied art, research and commerce.
These unique practices and trajectories are ambiently conveyed in corridors that collide in PASSAGES’ central creative freeport, a locale for exchange in which all paths are accepted and promiscuity – of product and purpose – is encouraged.
44 LABEL GROUP
"Jede Dunkle Nacht hat ein helles Ende.” (“Every dark night has a bright end.”)
44 Label Group is an authentic reflection of world-acclaimed DJ and music producer Max Kobosil’s vision. Based in Berlin, he is considered one of the most influential DJs on the techno music scene, thanks to his edgy and elated sound aesthetic. 44 Label Group interprets the spirit and the aspirations of the techno rave community that has gathered around Kobosil, whose identity is genuinely connected to the multicultural neighborhood of Berlin-Neukoelln, where the brand’s founder grew up and still lives – an area known, pre-unification, by its original postcode: “44.”
44 Label Group is nourished by music and subcultural influences, as well as by a liberating, unifying desire for self-expression and aggregation. It is a fashion brand offering an effortless, metropolitan style. Fueled by a deep sense of belonging transcending the gender binary, 44 Label Group creates intimate connections among those who share in the core values of rave culture: acceptance, freedom, and respect. 44 Label Group is powered by the Milan-based Dreamers Factory, founded by Claudio Antonioli. Led in collaboration with Matteo Milleri, the incubator is dedicated to amplifying the vision of global artists and creators – and providing them the means with which to realize their dreams.
Acne Studios is a Stockholm-based fashion house with a multidisciplinary approach. Through founder and creative director Jonny Johansson’s interest in photography, art, architecture, and contemporary culture, an alternative path has been found, turning Acne Studios into a well-respected creator of ready-to-wear, magazines, furniture, books, and exhibitions. The collections are defined by Jonny Johansson’s signature juxtaposing design and attention to detail, with an emphasis on tailoring and an eclectic use of materials and custom developed fabrics. The collections cover men’s and women’s ready-to-wear, footwear, accessories, and denim.
The collections are defined by Jonny Johansson’s signature juxtaposing design and attention to detail, with an emphasis on tailoring and an eclectic use of materials and custom developed fabrics. The collections cover men’s and women’s ready-to-wear, footwear, accessories, and denim. The Acne Studios headquarters are located in a Brutalist building at Floragatan 13 in central Stockholm that used to house the Embassy of the Czech Republic. In addition to the Stockholm headquarters, Acne Studios has flagship stores in Stockholm, Paris, Milan, London, New York City, Los Angeles, Seoul, Tokyo, and now Beijing, each with a unique concept.
entire (adjective) /ɪnˈtʌɪə,ɛnˈtʌɪə/ with no part left out
"Purpose: Quality Affordability Functionality Design Our aesthetic will always be luxury, but Entire Studios will be accessible. Entire Studios ranges will be simply yet thoughtfully designed and high quality.
We welcome any person to wear entire studios and within time, entire studios will cater to every person - irrespective of age, gender or body type.” – ES
Kasia Kucharska is a Berlin-based womenswear brand who have been recognized for pioneering a new product with our scribbled latex lace – merging architecture and fashion into wearable designs. The origin of their work can be found in historical lace making, and the brand’s drive is to translate traditional craft into contemporary clothing. With a focus on new ways of making garments, Kasia Kucharska is pushing the boundaries of conventional fashion design.
LECAVALIER was founded in 2019 by Chloé Prize and Canadian Art & Fashion Award winner Marie-Eve Lacavalier (b. 1988, Montreal). A label inspired by growing up in the suburbs, Lecavalier’s days elapse in the repeated experience of teenage ennui, from which the designer would escape into daydreaming, indulging in phantasmagorical worlds as she stared at the ceiling. Her mind visualized clothes she would dream of wearing. With a strong sense of storytelling, her first collections would present themselves as memorabilia from the 1960s, and as 1970s psychedelia, their colors and moiré effects influenced by Frank Zappa and bossa nova rhythms.
Combining impeccable and innovative craftsmanship, meticulous material research, and bold aesthetics, Lecavalier is best known for her unique interlocking leather technique – the designer’s “jersey weaving,” implemented across materials – her groovy patterns, and her eco-friendly upcycled silhouettes. As the brand evolves, its designer challenges herself to remain authentic, and to create pieces that are both relevant and sustainable. Rooted in family and Quebecois history, Lecavalier has taken inspiration from her grandfather’s career as a professional wrestler and her grandmother’s incarnation of the “cavalier” equestrian metaphor – using each influence to manifest a brand of perseverance and determination.
PHIPPS is founded on a deep sense of respect and curiosity for the natural world, but at its core, PHIPPS is focused on survival - as individuals, as a species, as a planet, and as an industry. PHIPPS creates collections blending new masculine archetypes with a unique appreciation for craft, quality, and a focus on environmental responsibility. PHIPPS encourages compassion and mindfulness in all aspects of life - sharing educated messages to expand knowledge of the environment, and uniting communities around the celebration of nature.
PHIPPS reignites fashion’s ability to restore a sense of function to any and every lifestyle, because we believe global consciousness goes far beyond the way a piece of clothing is made. As such, since its inception in 2018 PHIPPS has rapidly expanded its critical following, occupying the very forefront of contemporary fashion and leading the industry into a new and more responsible future. In its quest for a new modern ideology, PHIPPS is defining its own rules for contemporary fashion and establishing the modern example of an authentically responsible business.
S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA.
Over the past decade, Sterling Ruby has created clothing alongside his artwork, developing garments from the same handworked fabrics featured in his pieces, and experimenting with the same inquiries, ideologies, and aesthetic pursuits. Inspired by American traditions, culture, and craft, and informed by years of textile development, the clothing and accessories of S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA. exist in conversation with Ruby’s artistic practice, and further his investigation of utility as a wearable iteration of his previous work. Exploring dressing as a mode akin to collage, the collections bridge a divide between form and function, illustrating their relationship instead. Workwear silhouettes are enriched with handworked treatments. The process of dyeing and bleaching is mapped across fabrics in unique motifs. Prints adapted from original pieces by ruby are emblazoned on everyday t-shirts. One-of-a-kind looks sit alongside denim.
With a confluence of techniques and materials, S.R. STUDIO. LA. CA. signifies a natural evolution of Ruby’s interdisciplinary work— and celebrates a decidedly new direction.