MUMBAI, Oct. 30, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — United Colors of Benetton’s Global Artistic Director – Jean-Charles de Castelbajac (also JCDC) made his maiden visit to India.
Whether it’s Beyoncé’s wild blue jacket, Rihanna in a Donald Duck dress, or outfit queen Lady Gaga in a jacket with sewn-on Kermit the Frog puppets, they have all worn his creations and made them famous. Jean-Charles de Castelbajac is a designer who knows how to dress women with courage and creativity. And for his somewhat unorthodox tastes, he has been nicknamed ‘King of the Unconventional’.
The fashion fiesta kick-started with a creative master class by JCDC at Istituto Marangoni. A full-house attendance of young design & fashion students, the session was aimed at inspiring the future generation at embracing creativity with strength, focusing on sustainability and always being proud of one’s individuality. Young creators engaged themselves in conversations with the man-of-the-moment who inspired fashion trends for decades with his distinctive design aesthetics.
The masterclass was followed by a gala evening where the venue opened doors to prominent fashion & design stakeholders, Istituto Marangoni’s Mumbai alumni, Indo-Italian embassy delegates and opinion makers of the industry. Talked about at the venue was the high on style, limited edition collection by JCDC for Benetton titled The Rainbow Machine that made global headlines earlier this year when the brand made its debut on the runway at the Milan Fashion Week Fall-Winter’19. JCDC has recently showcased his SS20 collection Color Wave which is inspired entirely by sea. The collection was showcased at the historic Piscina Cozzzi Swimming pool in Milan. Castelbajac gave a sneak-peak to the creative design inspiration behind the collection and shared his inspirational stories.
Commenting on his trip, Castelbajac said, “I went to Dharavi on my day one of the visit and I was thrilled to see the recycling structure, the experience I had walking in those streets will stay with me for a lifetime. India is a land of stories, colors, smiles, art and it is heartening to see how Benetton has been growing in this country since the last 26 years – this has happened only because United Colors of Benetton and India share the same language and narrative. Sustainability of color and nature is holding strong in the future of Benetton India.”
Sundeep Chugh, MD & CEO of Benetton India, said, “We are honored to have JCDC come to India to share his design aesthetics and vision for Benetton. His body of work needs no introduction – a long career that spans from design to painting to street art, JCDC has mastered it all. His experience, charisma and ability to forecast tomorrow’s social, cultural and fashion trends constitute a great asset for our brand globally, and Benetton India couldn’t have been more excited to have him with us in Mumbai; straight from the runway of the Milan Fashion Week.”
This was the first-ever event in India which personified upcycling. This personality of the brand was evident at the event with the entire venue being set-up with utmost attention towards sustainability and recycling – there were three art installations made from pencil shavings, discarded glass bottles, broken CDs and molten waste crayons, respectively.
Benetton’s profound heritage was knitted colorfully around the theme of ‘Sustainability’. Green is not just the color of the brand; it is also a philosophy that has permeated the Benetton Group culture for decades. From eco-friendly white craft paper shopping bags, discarding denim treatment methods with sand-blasting and adhering to principles of organic agriculture to being associated with green projects & programmes like Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) Programme, The Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) among others; Benetton has been walking the sustainability talk for decade.
The evening was a true testament of Jean-Charles de Castelbajac’s iconic fashion repute, a celebration of Benetton’s heritage and legacy, with a modern spin, and a unique meet & greet of some of country’s most celebrated fashion voices.
About Benetton Group and United Colors of Benetton:
Benetton Group is one of the best-known fashion companies in the world, present in the most important markets with a network of about 5,000 stores. A responsible group that plans for the future and lives in the present – with a watchful eye to the environment, to human dignity, and to a society in transformation – the Group has a consolidated identity comprised of colour, authentic fashion, quality at democratic prices and passion for its work. These values are reflected in the strong, dynamic personalities of the United Colors of Benetton and Sisley brands.
United Colors of Benetton’s commitment to social issues has always been a central feature of the brand that, through its communications campaigns and collaborations with leading non-profit organizations, makes the public reflect on social issues of universal relevance.
About Jean-Charles De Castelbajac – Artistic Director, United Colors of Benetton:
Jean-Charles de Castelbajac has a long career that spans from design to painting, advertising and street art. He debuted in the fashion world in 1968, when he launched a brand created in collaboration with his mother. He then went on to inspire fashion trends such as the “anti-fashion” movement and the alternative use of objects to decorate garments.
In 1974 he co-founded Iceberg. In 1978 he founded maison Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, which he left in 2016. Over the years he has also collaborated with Max Mara, Ellesse, Courrèges, Rossignol, and Le Coq Sportif. Born from a mix of punk and pop, his style is characterized by the use of strong colors and pop icons, the mix of old and new and a whimsical and irreverent touch.
In his career, the French designer befriended and worked with artists such as Andy Warhol, Miguel Barcelo, Keith Haring, Jean Michel Basquiat, M.I.A and Lady Gaga. His creations have been displayed at New York’s Institute of Fashion and Technology, London’s Victoria&Albert Museum and the Galliera Museum in Paris. In 2018, he was guest artistic director at the Paris Biennale.
He was appointed the Artistic Director at United Colors of Benetton in October 2018. The designer will show some designs for fall 2019, but his first full-fledged collection will bow for spring 2020.
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