Extra/Ordinary

Colors magazine dedicates an outlook on the various worlds of fashion

Stazione Leopolda

On 22 June, the opening day of the 58th edition of Pitti Immagine Uomo, Colors will be presenting a number dedicated to fashion and an exhibition of the thousand extraordinary objects belonging to the XX century. The exhibition will be promoted and presented at the Stazione Leopolda in Florence in association with Pitti Immagine. The project is the work of the design division of Fabrica.

Ever since Oliviero Toscani and Luciano Benetton decided to create their own magazine - Colors, a magazine about the rest of the world - the editorial policy was clear: no celebrities, no chronicle and no fashion.

Therefore, why is Colors not only dedicating a whole number to fashion, but also celebrating its tenth year of activity with an exhibition produced in cooperation with Pitti Immagine? When we leaf through the pages of the magazine and move around the objects inside Stazione Leopolda we shall at once understand that there is no contradiction. Once again fashion is a pretext for a journey in local cultures to stress the refusal of a homologated single culture and single world.

Prêt-à-Porter: Extra/ordinary fashion – the title that Colors dedicates to fashion – is an outlook on the world and on the various worlds of fashion analyzed through the eyes of local culture and modern tribal images  (mainly for this reason Tati, the French department stores known throughout the world for their multi-ethnic customers, wished to take part in the operation). The products of the magazine constitute a major itinerary of faces, dresses and hairstyles. 227 looks for the new season worn by 5,505 models exclusively for Colors: Wodaabe warriors in Nigeria, boy scouts in Oman, soldiers in Colombia, bowlers in Johannesburg, astronauts at Cape Canaveral, toreadors at Arles, ravers in Tokyo, Father Christmases in London, orthodox Jews in Jerusalem, bikers a Daytona, housewives in Vladivostok, prisoners in Phoenix, nudists in Puget-Theniers and stock brokers in Chicago. This and much more in more than 200 pages of images from the  “rest of the world”, in the knowledge that there is no “single fashion” and no “single culture” as every culture and every fashion has the same dignity and equal rights throughout the world.

1000 Objects: Extra/ordinary Things on the other hand is a major exhibition of the archeological finds of the XX century: eccentric, fantastic and spectacular objects collected by Colors in ten-years of activities in contact with different cultures throughout the world. A collection of anthropological objects that relates the modern world as it would appear in the eyes of an extraterrestrial, by overcoming the limits between the ordinary and the extraordinary, between objects of design and those of everyday use, between reality and representation, between high fashion and everyday dress. But 1000 Objects: Extra/ordinary Things is also a 760 page book edited by Taschen and distributed throughout the world in 4 bilingual editions: a sample of the follies of the XX century that will be published on the occasion of the exhibition and which will also act as an official catalogue.

What is the reason for this “extra/ordinary partnership” between Pitti Immagine and Colors?

Pitti Immagine wants to pay homage to the communication project of a company –United Colors of Benetton – whose force and originality together with Colors and Fabrica - which are by now autonomous publications - constitutes a model for a global cultural company with which it is useful and stimulating to contrast ourselves.

And, moreover, because there is a basic affinity between the attitude of Colors and that of Pitti Immagine towards everyday communications and aesthetics. There is the same curiosity for novelties, and a common multi-disciplinary attention and interest in the multi-dimensional character of the phenomena of fashion, which Pitti Immagine has always maintained and which over the last 15 years has led to innovative formulas for fairs, exhibitions and other international initiatives involving culture and communication in the world of fashion.