Andrea, it’s been quite a few years since you have started the coordination of the Area of Costume Design here at the Accademia and at every start of the new Academic year is characterized by your enthusiasm and passion.. tell us why.
I believe in the students and in the possibility that they can achieve great results if guided with criteria and clear ideas. My job is to help them become “a young professional” and guide them in the “professional world” by letting them meet the requirements of this very particular field of work.
Enthusiasm is a key element of myself as I love each and every new challenge.
To study costume together with fashion, as it is in our Degree in Costume and Fashion Design (180 ECTS), is a truly unique aspect of our educational offer. What is the difference between this and another undergraduate programme only in Fashion Design?
Costume is most all a great cultural enrichment.
It is not only a simple acknowledgment of “yesterday’s” fashion, but an analysis of yesterday’s society that in some ways continues to repeat itself.
It is hence interesting to understand social, economic and cultural causes that leads to the evolution of clothing. If you add to this Costume Design, which for its nature studies human psychology (character analysis), it becomes easy to comprehend the added value of studying costume and fashion together, compared to only fashion.
Two years ago the Master’s degree in The Art and Craft of the Costume Designer, Opera and Ballet was introduced to our Academic Offer. Who is it for, and what exactly are the admission requirements?
It’s for all who loves entertainment in every aspect of it: Cinema and Film making, Ballet, Opera, Fictions, Theatre etc. Requisites are “love” for the job and “iron will” to sacrifice, in order to achieve the objective of becoming a Costume Designer. For what concerns the applicant’s educational career, it is not important for us to have studied Art, Literature or Humanistic disciplines…what really concerns us is the passion and motivation that the candidate transmits to us.
What does it mean to be a Costume Designer?
This really is a complicated question. Synthetically I can affirm that a costumier is first of all a creative designer and a person of competence, who understands and knows sartorial details, materials, leathers and metals of different periods. A costume designer needs to know contemporary and the ancient method of cutting and tailoring techniques. It is also very important to have a very open mind and be a manager, as the job requires managing personnel, planning budgets and paying huge attention to every detail of production costs. “Dulcis in fundo”, he needs to be a psychologist, so to study and bring to life through his work, the characters of the play, show, film etc.
Andrea, you have been on the job for decades, winning international awards and doing what you love. Is it a career that you would reccomend? If yes, what would be your chief recommendations?
Yes, of course I would recommend it! Obviously only to who candidates that have an attitude to this field of work.. let me repeat my self.. it’s not for everyone. The main suggestions are always the same: profound humility, dedication and much study, not less nor more than to become a medic!
What is in your opinion the blend between Fashion and Costume, and which, if any, the divisions?
What blends them is the human body that needs to be dressed, the materials and the tailoring techniques. For the rest they are two separate worlds because the purpose is different, the use of the product is different.
If you could go back, would you choose the same job?
Of course I would! Beside from the normal mistakes that you understand only by becoming an adult.
Why study costume in Rome?
Italian cinema was stabilised here in Rome, then it exploded internationally, still today it’s an important reference point for the global film making industry. Rome also homes many prestigious costumiers that were founded here and have developed and continue to work for the most important productions in Italy and abroad.