"Un giorno andrò a vivere in teoria, perché è in teoria che va sempre tutto bene" ("One day I will live in theory because in theory, everything is always fine"). These wise words echo the resolute spirit of theoretical thinking, heralding a philosophical journey into the depths of Simon Cracker's "IN TEORIA SS24" collection, masterfully crafted by the visionary duo of Simone Botte and Filippo Leone Maria Biraghi. Within the enigmatic realm of theory, their sartorial tapestry unfurls, beckoning us to confront the existential quandaries of human existence and to transcend the boundaries of traditional fashion.
In this collection, we find a symphony of paradoxes, a convergence of chaos and harmony that we at RED-EYE find captivating. It is a celebration of resilience, an audacious assertion of individuality that defies societal norms and embraces the tumultuous currents of creativity in the age of post-everything. As Nietzsche passionately proclaimed, "Man is something that shall be overcome." In the garments of "IN TEORIA SS24," we witness the emergence of the post-everything, as an epitome of human resilience, unshackled by convention and propelled by an irrepressible desire for an happy survival.
Entering the domain of theory, we encounter a multitude of fascinating elements carefully curated by the ingenious minds of Botte and Biraghi. A book, theoretically an encyclopedia, reveals itself to be an unreadable enigma, blurring the boundaries between knowledge and its elusive acquisition. A doll, envisioned to rival the iconic Barbie, paradoxically instills fear in young girls, unmasking the disquieting undercurrents beneath superficial appearances.
A seemingly idyllic village, theoretically a picturesque haven of happiness, unfolds as an inescapable prison, where inhabitants are reduced to mere numbers, their identities confined and constrained. And a strand of music, theoretically labeled as evil, unexpectedly unifies individuals from diverse social backgrounds, transcending divisions and fostering unity.
The collection itself embodies a paradoxical nature—a fusion of joyous chaos and unsettling undertones. It manifests as a vibrant patchwork of fabrics long neglected, chosen not because they appeased conventional tastes but because they dared to defy them.
Acid House t-shirts from the earliest raves of 1988 and a reimagined smiley face collide with stripes and meticulously tailored trench coats reminiscent of the village in "Il prigioniero" (The Prisoner), the pioneering 'mindfuck' television series of the 1960s. Prints, crafted with the technique of cyanotype, inspired by the enigmatic "Codex Seraphinianus," clash with the disquieting visages of Blythe and Lalaloopsy dolls suspended from "accumulation" bags.
Within the process of upcycling and crafting one-of-a-kind garments, a new dimension emerges—the inclusion of merchandise, theoretically simpler to comprehend and sell. Alongside Botte and Biraghi on this journey into theory, we find fellow travelers who have contributed their distinct artistic talents.
Iris Indrigo and Tommaso Pila, young fashion students, were entrusted with the creation of two exquisite garments, infusing their own unique perspectives into the collection. Francesca Mitolo of Tee-share provided the foundation for dozens of outfits, while Giovanni Mareschi of Laboratorio Riciclo Pelle crafted three exclusive pieces, showcasing the transformative power of recycling.
Enrica Ramilli of Da Quy lent her artistry to the footwear, while Stellina Fabbri and Michela Crippa graciously allowed their bijoux deadstock to be pillaged. And let us not forget Susi Foschi, the tireless explorer of raw materials, ceaselessly searching for new frontiers to "crackerize."
The sequencing of the runway presentation for this collection was paradoxically determined entirely by chance—a testament to the capriciousness of fate, a resilient act of willingly choosing chaos despite all odds. Furthermore, the soundtrack, in theory, serves as a harmonious amalgamation of Simone Botte's and Filippo Leone Maria Biraghi's adolescent experiences—a reverberation of memories entwined with the fabric of their flashy creative pursuits.
The press release boldly states that with deep reverence and admiration, this collection pays homage to the resilient people of Emilia Romagna, whose unwavering spirit shines through even in the face of adversity. In light of the devastating floods that have afflicted the region, their indomitable voices resonate as a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.
In the ephemeral realm of fashion, Simon Cracker's "IN TEORIA SS24" transcends the temporal confines, beckoning us to question the very fabric of our existence. It implores us to contemplate the paradoxes that shape our lives, shedding light on the interconnectedness of theory and reality, ultimately challenging us to uncover our own truths within the ever-shifting tapestry of being.
Article by Gloria Maria Cappelletti
Cover Image by RED-EYE Metazine and Runway Images by Nick Soland
Special Thanks to Maximilian Linz