The Students of the Accademia Costume e Moda Present Their Work at AltaRoma January 2016. Text & photos by Glenn Belverio


Above: Riot-friendly skater chic from Martina Scattarella

Dear Shaded Viewers,

Every year, the students of the Academy of Costume and Fashion present their work on the catwalk at AltaRoma. For this winter edition, the show was staged at Ex Dogana, the former customs train station in San Lorenzo.

Lupo Lanzara, the director of the Academy, spoke from the runway before announcing the Talents 2016 winner. “This is the occasion where they face for the very first time both the professional and outside world. That is why there is a need of the Accademia to create a jury of very important people, who can analyze the creative process, evaluate the designs, give feedback, providing opportunities and supporting growth.”

This year, the jury consisted of Marjan Pejoski and Sasko Bezovski of KTZ, the director of education at the Academy, Adrien Yakimov Roberts, and others.


Andrea Di Salvo’s collection was inspired by the traditional headdresses worn by the women of Brittany. “In this untouched location, the ethereal feminine figure is defined,” comments the designer. For me, this felt like a soft, effervescent version of the notorious sheet-metal collection presented in William Klein’s fashion send-up film Who Are You, Polly Maggoo?





Well, this collection gets a big cheer from me because it’s partially inspired by Fellini’s The Clowns, a personal favorite of mine. Flavia Colantoni’s collection was resplendent in outsize painterly windowpane prints, exaggerated proportions and roomy butterfly-motif bags. All perfect for running away to join the circus or taking the New York art world by storm.


“Beyond drug addiction, other themes are exploration of urban poverty and squalor in a culturally rich city,” is what Federica Rabito had to say about her collection. Her fresh take on street wear should wear well at the upcoming apocalyptic after parties.


Ilaria Fiore was the Talents 2016 winner this year and her pieces that juxtaposed elegant draping with structured leather summed up a paradox of female character: willfully vulnerable and usefully armored.


Pakistani designer Saima Shakoor presented a melange of fur, leather and feathers. “Mindi in Urdu means twine, twine used in an unconventional way, dilated glaringly in the knitting.”


Federica Melpignano featured gigantic natural yarns with knitwear motifs embossed on leather and jersey. “Knitwear symbolizes the image of a man who wraps and disguises himself in the urban chaos that he inhabits.”

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Hailing from Palermo, Sicily (my kind of town!), Livia Francese showcased shimmering accordion-pleated skirts and hand-dyed salmon-skin accessories.


Russian designer Svetlana Nadezhdina combined simple shapes and sophisticated machining of light fabrics, leather and fur, held together by a harness stitch. “For a confident woman, but determined and aggressive at the right time.”


Poncho perfection: Sharon Journo Barda of Monaco di Baviera played with a plethora of handmade embroidery, wool and rich brocades inspired by the garb of Vietnamese mountain tribes.

Thanks for reading.


Glenn Belverio

Glenn Belverio

Glenn Belverio is a writer and New Yorker. He has been reporting for ASVOF since 2005 and currently works at The Museum of Modern Art as the Content Manager for MoMA Design Store.