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‘CAOSORDINATO’ (ORDERLYCHAOS) was a very rewarding book. It started out as a cultural project and then morphed into a series of events and installations aiming to bring fashion, design and art people together.

The dialogue that naturally arose from that led to discussions about ‘worklife’ experiences. Everyone was excited to see outfits made up of extraordinary ‘vintagepieces’ selected in my years of research, which we all ‘talkedabout’ and ‘studiedupclose’. On these ‘fashionculture’ occasions, many people, including designers, journalists, entrepreneurs and artists, asked me and Corinna to open up our closely guarded ‘livingarchive’ packed with creativity and ideas and make it available to all, first in a book of ‘photographicimages’ and then in an exhibition at these events.

The response was a ‘desiretoshare’, a desire to let these pieces live again and open up the archive for discovery. I like the idea of showing and letting our research live in a new way of communicating, exchanging and involving others in a world in which the tendency is to keep things closed up and hidden. I like to observe people as they look at these clothes, discovering the mixture of different periods, touching the fabrics to feel the compactness or fluidity and trying to understand how they were made, even taking photos of the details and patterns. They study the ‘colourways’, the techniques, and the special yarns and accessories used in order to find new ‘creativeimagination’ in line with their own ‘personalvisions’.

The experience gained at the exhibition entitled ‘UNAVITADALEM’ (THE LIFE OF LEM), held in collaboration with the Brera Academy of Fine Arts, has been key on this journey. The idea came from a meeting in the ‘CAOSORDINATO’ cultural project with the work of the textile design students held by our friend Paola Maddaluno. ‘UNAVITADALEM’ is about “little ego man”, which then became a ‘playtheme’ for the work the students showed at the exhibition. At the centre of everything is the archive, which I like to call my ‘dailystore’ and which contains pieces selected in ‘40years’ of research in shops and markets around the world. Reliving their stories, describing where and when they come from, the different traditions, cultures and periods is a game of mix and match that creates an ‘EMOTIONALRHYTHM’.

Stefano Chiassai

It's incredible when you can hold a dream in your hand: it's a dream becoming reality. Seeing how what's in your head can take shape in various art forms is so rewarding it pushes me constantly to do more. ‘CAOSORDINATO’ and this book represent one of the most important examples of this. In these pages we talk about culture, details, fabrics, unusual combinations, graphics, colours, and the imaginary and real characters that are part of our story.

Rules are broken in here, and it's like a breath of fresh air in your face, sweeping away the everyday problems you have to deal with. In these times when speed is everything, communicative immediacy wins out and content is fleeting, we want to focus the attention on the value of research, on that instinctive search dictated by the ‘rhythm’ of our thoughts popping up freely in our head - an ‘EMOTIONALRHYTHM’.

Corinna Chiassai

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