Costumes are an essential element of any film production and are pivotal to the mise-en-scene of a film. Costumes give us insights into the characters they clothe, the society that they are a part of, and the relevance of the two in the film’s larger cultural milieu. Not only do costume designers, who work hidden behind the camera, have to make sure that their designs are historically accurate or contemporaneous, they also have to make sure that the costuming is evocative of a character’s moods and personality. They must tell a silent story and build an atmosphere all while creating memorable couture.
Avid Learning and Italian Embassy Cultural Centre in association with Vogue India will present a first of its kind panel discussion titled “Cine Couture: Costuming For The Camera”. Chairing the discussion will be award-winning Italian costume designer Daniela Ciancio who will be making her maiden visit to the sub-continent and national award-winning Bollywood couturier Neeta Lulla in conversation with Vogue India Editor-in-Chief Priya Tanna. From cross-cultural comparisons between American, Italian, and Indian cinema, the evening will witness a discussion on processes and production of costume design, its role as a cinematic device and its larger part in shaping cultural ideologies.
Daniela Ciancio who is the ambassador selected for Mumbai and has designed the costumes of films like La Grande Bellezza and Il Divo amongst others.
Neeta Lulla who is currently working on Manikarnika and Panipat states, “A designer’s work exists to actualize the screenplay, defining the people and the places, a marriage of concept and imagery. That’s why costume designers are called the language of film design. The substance of costume design isn’t just the designing of original garments but creating multiple masterpieces from scratch to compliment the sensibilities of not just one person but a cast and crew of over 5000 people. We support the narrative by creating authentic characters and we provide balance within the frame by using color, texture, and silhouette by painting each frame of the film.”
Priya Tanna, Editor-in-Chief, Vogue India states, “The history of film showcases the role that costumes have played in translating the director’s vision—from the couture-laden world of Phantom Thread to the colour-coded confectionery themes of Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel or even the biopic Gandhi, costumes are as effective in creating fantasy as depicting the ethos of a time. In fact, it’s hard to imagine films like Sabrina and Memoirs of a Geisha without recalling their costumes, as alive and crucial as the characters themselves.”
Asad Lalljee, CEO, Avid Learning & SVP, Essar Group states, “At AVID we are always keen to support new voices and introduce alternative perspectives from the world over while strengthening our cultural relations. In this light, we regularly collaborate with Consular presences in this Maximum city. We have done considerable work with the IIC over the years with an aim to increase awareness of Italian art, design and culture and to also promote exchanges and discourses between creative industry practitioners from both countries. We are delighted to present yet another fine mind from Italy in Daniela. We are also excited to feature a trailblazer from our own Indian Film scene, celebrated Bollywood couturier, Neeta Lulla. And to partner with Vogue, India’s premier fashion magazine, is a most stylish fit!”
This panel will be the concluding event for the first edition of “Fare Cinema – The International Week Of Italian Cinema”, a concerted programme, which the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-Operation (MAECI) has launched to promote Italian quality film production abroad. The programme entails nation-wide screenings of contemporary Italian films and interactions on the crafts of filmmaking with chosen ambassadors for each city. Over 100 ambassadors of cinema in 100 different cities have participated in conferences, meetings with the public, seminars, panels and discussions sharing experiences of daily work driven by passion, creativity and top-level technical competences and skills.