A Devotion to Art and Performance

“All the world’s a stage,” or so they say – while we may love the drama of dressing, we’re not always so interested in the drama of dressing.

To define and distill one’s own personal style is a challenge many of us struggle with over a lifetime. What do I wear to this event? Is this pant flattering? Am I wearing this flashy jacket, or is it wearing me? …What a headache. At its best, personal style is simply a translation of the inner self. Are you refined? Bohemian? A little bit of everything? “All the world’s a stage,” but you, the individual, is the only audience that matters. This is a tenet central to confident dressing – and one that designer Angelo Iannello of Masnada understands firsthand.

Paolo Porpora, “Sottobosco con funghi, rane, lucertole e serpenti” (1652-56) © Gallerie d’Italia

Angelo’s artistry is evident at first blush – the cascading vegetable silk, exposed stitchery, unique textures and colligated prints speak to a subtle drama often found in high-taste design. However, peek behind the curtain and find the deft creativity of Angelo’s team. This is a group of textile artisans informed by deep artistic backgrounds, such as painting, photography, and perhaps most interestingly, theatrical costume design.

The collection is equal parts Victorian posterity, Art Deco elegance and contemporary grunge. Unafraid to mesh patterns and textures, Angelo combines checker, houndstooth, floral jacquard and paint splatter, as if each is merely a small part of a larger ensemble cast.

Paolo Porpora, “Sottobosco con granchio, farfalle, rospi, conchiglie e tartarughe” (1650-56) © Gallerie d’Italia

A devotion to art and performance is mixed with Angelo’s extensive research into how shape informs the identity of a garment – to present a jacket with a tailored waist is to compete against centuries of intellectual and formal wear informing that garment’s soul. The tailored jacket in Angelo’s hands becomes a symbol of femininity – cut close to the waist (without too much restriction!) to highlight the silhouette. To play with – and ultimately deconstruct – these visual cliches and preconceived notions is to redefine what fashion is and can be. What a pleasure it is to watch Masnada do it with such panache.

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