27 February 2011

A visit to Studio Osti.

Words and pictures; Blake Witherow.
I bought my first Massimo Osti jacket over a month ago. I found it in a second hand store here in Milano. I was perplexed by this strange material and utilitarian styling. This jacket was from the ‘Left Hand’ collection and is made from ‘ThermoJoint’ material. From then onward I began looking for information about Massimo Osti and the legacy that he left, the first search I got was Oneupmanship's articles on Osti and Left Hand from several years ago, so I got in touch.
A large portion of the Massimo Osti legacy can be found at his Studio in Bologna. The Studio is located on the outskirts of Bologna. You can take a taxi to the Studio or be an idiot like me and walk for 45 minutes. The converted warehouse contains the Garment and Fabric collection and a graphic design firm. The Garment collection is at the back of the studio and the fabric collection is located underneath an elevated level containing even more dyed fabrics!

The first thing that hits you as the door to the Archive is opened is the smell. Leather, synthetics and natural fibres are mixed together in a rich, musky smell that should be made into a cologne for men to smell to smell more like men. Currently, Lorenzo and Pamela are still working on the upcoming book detailing Massimo’s contribution to the fashion world. The book currently sits at 350 pages and is due to be released next year. Hence the clothing archive can best be described as “organised chaos” Pamela explaining to me how they have documented all of the ranges of clothes and the different variations within that line of clothing, photographing and archiving each garment in a database. When I saw all of the racks together, it made it apparent that Massimo was extremely dedicated to his work (read: Passionate) For me, the most enthralling part was being able to touch and grope these garments that I could only ever normally view on a computer screen.
After two hours of going through the Archive, my shoulders were sore from holding jackets and pants. You could easily spend a full day going through all the clothes and samples. Pamela made an interesting point, Italians are not terribly excited about Massimo Osti but she said that many people from outside Italy are completely different. They are more involved and appreciate the brand and the history more. That was a fairly accurate description of me.

The fabric collection is absolutely mind boggling. Racks and more racks of every fabric that you could think of. I barely made it a quarter of the way through before I had to turn back. I was lucky enough to find a synthetic fabric that was used for inside of my own jacket. It gave me a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Unfortunately I had to head back to Milan that afternoon. Please take note if taking the train as there are the normal platforms and EAST or OVEST. Just so that you do not miss your train like I did and have to wait for one hour for the next. But if you have time (like I did) go for a walk around Bologna as it is nice city from what I briefly saw. I would like to thank Lorenzo and Pamela for their time and allowing me to view a piece of history that has influenced (and continues to provide influence) to many people all over the world.

1 comment:

  1. How can a person go abourt seeing the studio?