FILA recently stepped onto the runways of Milan Fashion Week for the very first time to unveil its inaugural solo showcase. Known primarily for its forceful grip on the activewear front, the heritage imprint, over the years, has embraced sound streetwear styling, finding unique ways to inject urban refinement into its wares, which becomes more than evident in its very first runway presentation.
Models hit the stage in an orderly fashion, as monochromatic fits paraded down the catwalk in a streamlined sequence, starting off with white before moving onto red and black, with a mishmash of varying hues dispersed in between — all of which does well to tease sharp contrast into an otherwise minimalist palette. Lightweight outerwear stands out front and center, many leaning on the brand’s core sportswear ethos, while also tapping into sophisticated silhouettes — most noticeably in the selection of tonal blazers, Harrington-stye zips and sleek overcoats.
Collared tennis shirts, v-neck pullovers, and crisp button-downs also played a role in contributing to the lineup’s polished facade, while a string of accessory embellishments, including a barrage of carryall options, headwear and PVC-style rain covers add a hint of functional flair. Although new to the fashion week calendar as a standalone name, FILA embraced the spirit of Milan and the high-end fashion world with models such as Isabeli Fontana, Maartje Verhoef, Jaon Smalls and Daphne Groeneveld walking its runway.
On top of launching its first-ever solo collection, Fila, in collaboration with HYPEBEAST, also unveiled a special issue magazine which highlights the brand’s rich history from 1962; starting off as an undergarment manufacturer, before moving on to sportswear, footwear, and now as a player in the fashion sphere. The special issue also tells the story of the brand through the eyes of photographer Julian Song and art director Nicolas Santos. An excerpt from the magazine can be read below:
Despite the fashion elements of your photography, your work is all about humanistic values. Why is that?
Julian Song: This might have something to do with my childhood. Because I grew up in a rural village, the simplest human connections were all I knew, and those memories have stayed with me throughout my life. After I moved away from the village and gradually left that chapter of my life behind, I’ve become more nostalgic for that quality of human connection that’s so rare in big cities. I think my style is to remind myself of that.
Your work often highlights the beauty and form of the human body, what is it about the human body that intrigues you?
Nicolas Santos: It’s our only physical cue from where to develop our identity. Exploring the human body allows us to know more about ourselves. But it’s not the only thing of course.
How do you communicate with your subjects in a shoot, thereby guiding their performance in front of the camera?
Santos: I usually let the subjects quite free, i think it’s important in order to get them to act in a natural way. In this case the photographer and I briefed the models on the mood we wanted them to convey, we had some books on set and this helped them understand what parts of their own personality we were interested in.
In other fashion news, Liam Hodges and FILA reunite for a ’90s-influenced Fall/Winter 2018 capsule.