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Fashion-making and co-creation in the transglobal landscape: Sino-Italian fashion as method

  • Wessie Ling (a1) and Simona Segre Reinach (a2)

Abstract

The ‘making’ of fashion cannot merely refer to garment production and manufacturing. It is the prerequisite for a nation to actively participate on the global stage. To establish a ‘recognisable’ fashion image, a country must go far beyond the competition of a specialised garment and textile industry. Being recognised as the ‘author countries’ for fashion creation is part of a process in which the (re)negotiation of national hierarchies and roles are constantly at play. For a country or a city, expressing an instantly recognisable aesthetic has become an important corollary of the communication of political and economic strength. More than in the past centuries, fashion has been tasked with not only reflecting and representing social or individual needs, but also constructing ex novo territories in which old stereotypes and imaginary are creatively set free. This is because, unlike most production and commercial activities, fashion expresses an elaborate culture whose composition of symbols, ideologies and lifestyles (Crane 2004) can be drawn on. On the other hand, the accelerated production relocation in past decades has irrevocably changed the geography of fashion, as well as the rhetoric of the origin of national creativity. In particular, it leads one to wonder what happens when two or more players are engaged in the making of fashion. Specifically, what happens when Italy and China collaborate in transglobal fashion-making? How does one account for the national creativity that has sprung from the Sino-Italian co-creation? Drawing on accounts of Italian fashion and Chinese fashion, this article discusses the intricacy of Sino-Italian collaboration and the implications of such a fashion co-creation; it then reflects on transglobal fashion-making and proposes a framework for its examination.

Per una nazione o per una città, esprimere un'estetica immediatamente riconoscibile è diventato un corollario importante per comunicarne la forza politica ed economica. Più che nei secoli passati, la moda ha avuto il compito non solo di riflettere e rappresentare i bisogni sociali o individuali, ma anche di costruire ex novo territori e immaginari che fossero creativamente liberi da vecchi stereotipi. D'altra parte, la delocalizzazione accelerata della produzione negli ultimi decenni ha cambiato irrevocabilmente la geografia della moda, nonché la retorica sull'origine della creatività nazionale. Questo porta a chiedersi che cosa accada quando due o più protagonisti sono impegnati nella creazione di moda. In particolare, che cosa succede quando l'Italia e la Cina collaborano alla produzione di una moda globalizzata? Come si spiega la creatività nazionale che emerge dalla co-creazione di una moda sino-italiana? Attingendo a diversi materiali di ricerca sulla moda italiana e sulla moda cinese, l'articolo intende discutere la complessità delle collaborazioni sino-italiane e le implicazioni che derivano dalla co-creazione di moda. Ne emerge una riflessione sul significato di moda globalizzata e la proposta di un quadro concettuale per analizzarla.

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References

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Fashion-making and co-creation in the transglobal landscape: Sino-Italian fashion as method

  • Wessie Ling (a1) and Simona Segre Reinach (a2)

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