Hinting and what will become common standard when the ITS Arcademy is up-and-running, during 2019 we developed a project connecting young students from fashion design courses at High Schools in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region, because thinking and planning responsibly is something that needs to be taught early along the way to becoming a designer.
The idea was to provide them with an unforgettable, hands-on learning experience: invite them for a visit of the ITS Creative Archive exploring the creativity of our past finalists, challenge them with the development of a responsible creativity-based briefing, connect their learning experience at school with the professional industry, allow selected winners to develop their projects supported by a professional tutor and attend the ITS 2019 Finals to meet the strongest young talents on the planet.
We involved students in their 4th & 5th year at Liceo Artistico Statale Sello in Udine and Liceo Artistico Enrico e Umberto Nordio in Trieste as well as one 1st year audiovisual course student of the Università degli Studi di Udine / DAMS Gorizia, Arianna Colajori, who got to communicate the project by documenting it with short videos and photos.
After picking their inspiration piece in the ITS Creative Archive, students received recycled denim fabrics offered by DIESEL, one of partners in this initiative to stimulate these very young potential future talents to think with a responsibly creative approach focused on sustainability.
Judged by Barbara and by Rina Tollio - Talent Acquisition Manager for Creative Roles at OTB, the projects presented by the students showed truly promising qualities in terms of technical abilities and reference in the original inspiration outfit. This led to selecting more winners than expected, mentioning others who deserved credit for their work:
Liceo Artistico Statale Sello winners: Vania Dai and Giada Pegoraro, with special mentions to the work of Giulia Tambosco and Marta Zanini). Liceo Artistico Enrico e Umberto Nordio winner. Martina Pollastri, with a special mention to the work of Matile Pernacic.
Winners played with volumes and proportions in their outfits, managing to balance their references to the ITS Creative Archive piece they selected with the briefing requirements from Diesel. A few irreverent experimentations were really appreciated, and even though in terms of the weight of the final pieces these were slightly exceeding a comfortable wear, students showed a strong sense of design and use of color which is very promising for their future.
Arianna Colajori allowed us to step into the schools' labs through her camera and follow the development of the proposals and of the final outfits. Her closeup details, focusing on the handcraft work, on the collaboration between students and on the support provided by their teachers wonderfully document the excitement and energy provided to the students by this kind of projects. These aren't just formative experiences, they really fuel dreams with real opportunities for growth.
During ITS 2019 the winners had the unique opportunity to personally meet & chat with the finalists about their projects and career experiences, attend the fashion show & awards ceremony in the evening - for a taste of the international breadth that ITS stands for - and enjoy the after party at our venue on the sea.
It felt crazy for us to think that ITS is literally an hour's drive away from high schools packed with youngsters dreaming of a future in creativity. Opening visits to the ITS Creative Archive simply wasn't enough, we knew we could do more and finally we got to light the spark.
High Schools Produce for ITS Archive will be re-vamped in 2020 involving a lot more regional high schools as well as professional education centers. It will be rooted in a responsible attitude towards creativity that will resonate in everything the ITS Arcademy will do, that thinks sustainably from the moment you wake up in the morning. Challenging you to dream it, plan it and CREATE it.