An Italian fashion label is under fire for it’s new Spring Summer collection inspired by…colonialism.
Lets face it most so-called ‘brands’ in 2018 just rely on lazy designs and ‘hypebeasts’, Supreme and Off White we are looking at you. Whilst we are critical of those brands, if you can stick a logo on a cheap t-shirt and mark it up by 300% you are just realising your American dream.
But Big Uncle a Milan-based menswear brand has taken it a step too far. The designers have denied endorsing a ‘historically bloody period full of atrocities’, or rather profiting from a horrible period in our history that has shaped the current climate of most countries.
Big Uncle describe its new ‘Colonial Deal’ range as:
A short and an intense journey in the West former colonies in order to understand the Colonial style. The Big Uncle man of SS18 proposes the COLONIAL DEAL, what the eyes, the sense of touch and mind recall of those places.
Forms and volumes intertwine like the East’s and the West cultures; the colors are warm like the cities, soft like the sunsets, dusty like the dirt roads.
As persuasive are those places the linen is rough like the faces consumed by the sun, the military colors and the leather are a soft suede.
The garments, whether they have different weights and consistencies, whether they are rough or delicate, remind us of our emotion, of our COLONIAL DEAL.
To begin, if the geniuses asked any resident of a former colonised nation ‘what the eyes, the sense of touch and mind recall of those places’: poverty, misery and unspeakable evil would be the first things to spring to mind. The designers description of the brand just shows how out of touch and uneducated on the topic they are. If they really wanted their design to evoke emotions they should tell the real story of colonialism. Such as how it led to apartheid in South Africa, and the nations that have had their development retarded by western nations bleeding them dry.
We imagine the image below is the ‘military colours’ the designers got their inspiration from. For many these colors were indicators of death and suffering but for millennials in 2018 they are fashion inspiration.
This brand, founded in 2014, defines itself as being based on a ‘strong identity’ that ‘tells the story of metropolitan lives and travels around the world, where inspiration is then found in every collection’.
In a response to the Metro the designers said: ‘Writing “COLONIALISM” on a t-shirt doesn’t mean to celebrate that historical period, but instead, it wants people to reflect on it’.
Its clear the brand knew what they were doing and the outrage this has created has created attention around their brand of which they are profiting from. If they are the moral people they claim to be, lets see them donate 50% of the proceeds to supporting charities in third world countries that are still reeling from the effects of colonialism.
We shall wait with bated breaths!