BEFORE becoming known as a painter of landscapes, seascapes and flowers, Juvenal SansÃ³ designed patterns and prints for fabric. Decades after creating them, these prints have come to life on contemporary couture pieces.
Manila-based couture brand SeptiÃ¨me Rebelle and Fundacion SansÃ³ are collaborating on âSansÃ³ Textile Designs X Seventh Rebelle: A Fashion and Art Exhibitâ, presented at Galerie Joaquin in the One Bonifacio High Street Mall in Bonifacio Global City.
Fundacion SansÃ³ is a non-profit and non-profit organization created to preserve, conserve and promote the artistic legacy of Mr. SansÃ³.
âThe collaboration started when we started activating the lesser known works of Mr. SansÃ³,â said Ricky Francisco, director of the Fundacion SansÃ³. Business world in a joint Zoom interview with Seventh Rebel founder Robert Bjorn O. Santos.
âNot many people know that he was also a very prolific textile designer,â Mr. Francisco said.
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The 92-year-old Spanish-born Filipino painter worked on textile designs while a student at the National School of Fine Arts in Paris, France. It was his way of supporting himself when the Philippine Central Bank put a cap on the financial aid his father could send him from Manila.
“When [Mr. SansÃ³] went to Paris in 1951, he must have made some money because there was a rule back then, after WWII, that only $ 150 can be taken out of the Philippines at one time. His family could not send [him] $ 150 to live in Paris, âexplained Francisco.
During his stay in Paris, Mr. SansÃ³ met people who put him in contact with textile designers in Paris and fashion houses. He created textile designs for them from the 1950s to the 1960s.
“Textile design allowed her to meet people like (Italian fashion designer) Elsa Schiaparelli, who introduced her to the owner of the gallery in Paris who gave her her first solo exhibition as a painter,” said M Francisco. âIt also allowed him to meet Gian Carlo Menotti, the (Italian-American) director and composer who gave him his first lyrical break (as a costume designer) at the Festival des Deux Mondes in Spoleto, Italy, at the end of the 1960s. “
Mr. SansÃ³’s hand-painted textile designs included flowers and foliage, as well as geometric shapes and abstract patterns. Maison Balenciaga was its biggest customer.
Fashion designer and founder of Seventh Rebel, Robert Bjorn O. Santos, has taken design courses at Istituto Marangoni-Paris, London College of Fashion and Central Saint Martins. He has a personal preference for asymmetrical details, diagonal cuts and slashes. Mr. Santos balanced these details with the 1950s and 1960s aesthetic of Mr. SansÃ³’s textile designs.
Before finishing 38 looks for the exhibition, the team browsed nearly 200 SansÃ³ textile creations.
âWe had to choose the designs that were truly representative of Mr. SansÃ³’s workâ¦ He must have a good representation of each of the genres that he is able to do,â said Mr. Santos. âSo when we finally got to the patterns, I had to look for fabrics that would mimic the look of these textile patterns. “
For the exhibition, Mr. SansÃ³’s original hand-painted designs on fabric were digitally printed and garments using the printed fabric were produced.
In the exhibition, 38 looks are divided according to the color palette, and these are juxtaposed with SansÃ³’s actual paintings. Limited edition Seventh Rebel embroidered bags with patterns inspired by textile designs are also on display.
âI basically combined a printed garment with something with more solid colors, just to balance it out. I [also] used a lot of different materials, different trims to make the finish of the clothes more presentable, âMr. Santos said, adding that he also uses beadwork, appliques and ribbon trims in the pieces, which is rare for his creations.
“We can live without these [details], however, I felt it would be more of a tribute to the artist if we put more effort into making certain things more beautiful, âhe said.
“When people say SansÃ³, they think of Brittany [in France] or flowers, âFrancisco said. “We wanted to show that he had come a long way before he achieved success, and that he was capable of doing a lot of things.”
“SansÃ³ Textile Designs X Seventh Rebel: A Fashion and Art Exhibit” is on view until December 20 at Galerie Joaquin, One Bonifacio High Street Mall in BGC, Taguig City. The collection is also part of fundraising efforts in partnership with the Fundacion SansÃ³. Follow @fundacion_sanso and @septiemerebelle on Instagram. – Michelle Anne P. Soliman