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My Own Show: Sante Bozzo

We speak to the 23-year-old finalist of the IED-run fashion initiative about Milan Fashion Week and his new collection incorporating the ideas of white paint on naked bodies

Reaching out to promising talents from the fashion courses on the IED network, the My Own Show initiative, which launched back in 2006 has, for many winners, perhaps not held the door open, but certainly pushed it ajar to some of Italy’s most prestigious fashion houses. A venture run by the Istituto Europeo di Design and Vogue Italia’s Franca Sozzani, the competition aims to give young designers a genuine insight into the industry, pairing them up with fashion brands including Valentino and Alberta Ferretti to help produce and nurture their collections before taking them to Milan Fashion Week.

To put my pieces together, I started by deconstructing men’s garments. The volumes and shapes arose from a long and absorbing process of experimenting with volumes

Sante Bozzo, Vincenzo Lattanzio, Inés Vilagut, and Francesca Lancia were all declared winners for 2012, but it was 23-year-old Bozzo whose proposal to create the illusion of paint on a naked body that intrigued us the most. This is what he had to say about his experience...

Dazed Digital: What motivated you to become a designer?
Sante Bozzo: I have always been really passionate about fashion. Fashion is the ultimate expression of my thoughts, there’s no other way I could communicate my attitude and my creative inspirations.

DD: What was the inspiration behind your collection?
Sante Bozzo: 'Camera' is the result of intensive research, it is a universe of matter made of a pure white, which I then developed in different shades, often broken up by blue ink. Inspired by Francesca Woodman, its distinctive trait is the way that the different white materials are layered to simulate the sensation of painting on naked bodies.

DD: Your pieces involve lots of layering, can you explain how you constructed them?
Sante Bozzo: To put my pieces together, I started by deconstructing men’s garments. The volumes and shapes arose from a long and absorbing process of experimenting with volumes.

DD: What was the highlight of the competition?
Sante Bozzo: Taking part in My Own Show gave me a chance to show my work to a jury of industry experts, who appreciated what I had done and chose it for a prize. In addition, I was fortunate to be sustained by such an important brand name – Valentino Fashion Group – in producing my first capsule collection. It was a very important opportunity to get my name known and it gave me an enormous sense of achievement to be chosen as one of this edition’s finalists.

Another thing that was really important for me was the chance I had, during the final selection phase, to get to know so many young designers from other cities and countries, who like me had just finished a training course in one of the many locations of the IED. It gave me the chance to compare my experience and working methods with them. All in all, it was a stimulating experience that is helping me mature professionally and as a person.

DD: How was your experience working at Valentino? What did you learn?
Sante Bozzo: I joined the Valentino Fashion Group last year. It is my first-ever working experience in fashion and is opening my eyes to the true meaning of fashion today, teaching me about creative timings, the speed of design and the market. Without forgetting the ineffable charm of a dream...

DD: What are you doing next?
Sante Bozzo: I do not have any precise plans for the future. I love living my life without planning it. I would like to learn more, travel and keep on experimenting with my ideas, launching a small line of select creations under my own name.