Each year MoMu grants the ‘MoMu Award’ to an MA student of the fashion department of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Antwerp. This award is granted to the student whose work stands out because of its unique graphic language with a photoshoot and interview on the MoMu website.
This year the MoMu Award has been awarded to Gennaro Genni Velotti, who named his MA graduation collection 2018, ‘Libera’ or the female version of the Italian wordfor ‘free’. This title stems from the avant-garde movie directed by Pappi Corsicato that is set in Velotti’s hometown of Naples. Velotti was inspired by the movie’s surrealism and by the duality of the character ‘Carmela’ who is a man in the appearance of a mother. The idea to simultaneously take on the role of father and mother, reminds Velotti of his own mother who proudly carries the weight of their entire family on her shoulders.
Velotti studied the work of Italian feminists and artists like Ketty La Rocca, Joseph Beuys, Martin Parr and Ferdinando Scianna and took the frustratingly outdated and stereotypical gender boundaries as the starting point of his collection. The top layers of his collection is ‘masculine’ oversized tailoring in a men’s size sixty; the garments underneath and the accessories are intriguing symbols of Naples beach culture. His family there works in the beach-related business in the city: his mother runs a beauty salon and his siblings have a tanning shop. Velotti finds the habit of people in Naples, where it is always summer, to get tanned in a salon absurd, yet, recognizes that the beauty ideal of being very tanned, to be part of his cultural heritage. The little sunglasses shaped like the protective goggles worn under tanning beds are worn with skin-tone catsuits spray-painted in different shades of severe sunburn. His lifelong observation of local beach wear lead to his creation of ingenious draped wet-looks that resemble clinging clothes after swimming, to luxurious towel dresses in fur, and to the archetypical wooden Italian high-heeled clogs combined with a second layer of flip-flops.
During the renovations, MoMu hopes to inspire people at other locations. Discover the photoshoot on display in the newly opened AMS (Antwerp Management School) building at Boogkeers 5 from November 29th 2018 until 31st January 2019.
In 2018 Antwerp Management School launched the unique Master in International Fashion Management to build the bridge between business and fashion. Students will become part of the next generation of responsible creative leaders, thinkers and entrepreneurs.
Image credits: MoMu Award 2018, Gennaro Genni Velotti, “Libera”
Photographer Jessica De Maio, Styling Alessandro Mugnai, Makeup and hairstyling Letizia Pecchia, Models Weronica Kulas @Independent Mgmt - Anna Drozdova @Wonderwall Mgmt, Production Initials L.A., thanks to Lies Muys & Charlotte Gesquière