Rome, an extraordinary Maison: the archives and creations of its costume studios

23rd October is the opening day of ROMAISON 2020, the first edition of a project that has the support of the Mayor, Virginia Raggi. The project sees Rome become part of fashion’s modern history, revealing itself as an extraordinary design laboratory where high artisanship lives alongside historical archive. This is a new opportunity for the city, which is opening its historical locations to projects dedicated to fashion research, concentrating on the area’s artisanal roots, and how they are being translated into digital and technological modernity.

The initiative comes in two parts: an exhibition from 23rd October until 29th November at the Ara Pacis Museum and an event scheduled to be held at the Mattatoio di Testaccio, both of which promote this creative DNA as a source of eternal inspiration, which gave birth to a spectacular style where high fashion and theatrical costume combine.

The Ara Pacis Museum is to host a major exhibition showcasing Rome’s most prestigious costume studios curated by fashion historian and critic, Clara Tosi Pamphili, which evokes the studios where visitors can observe the creativity, the techniques and the Italian savoir faire, and engage with the costume studios’ private archives and collections.

Annamode, Costumi d’Arte – Peruzzi, Farani, Pieroni, Tirelli will take centre stage in an exhibition rich in outfits and accessories from various eras. For the first time, this event will showcase the rich heritage of authentic pieces from the end of the 18th century up to today. Among the iconic pieces there are also designs from the personal archive of Gabriele Mayer, including photos and videos. One section is dedicated to Mensura, which has produced mannequins for more than a century, highlighting the relationship between art and artisanship.

This contemporary and experimental narrative includes an extraordinary performance, Embodying Pasolini, which will be streamed live and available worldwide. TILDA SWINTON, the multi-award-winning Scottish actress, will take centre stage at the Mattatoio di Testaccio. The event, curated by Olivier Saillard, fashion historian, world-renowned fashion curator and ex-director of the Palais Galliera fashion museum of the city of Paris, reflects on the evocative power of the costumes created by Rome’s artisans for the films of Pier Paolo Pasolini.

The initiative is promoted by Rome City Council. Organised by Zètema Progetto Cultura with technical assistance from Rinascente. We would also like to thank Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna and Istituto Luce – Cinecittà and Fondazione Cinema per Roma.

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