The Elephant in the Room
ONE WEEK ABOUT Milan Design Week 2023
Day 5 – report by David Heldt
BYBORRE takes center stage, literally. In the centrally located fortress where Leonardo da Vinci once worked as a military and civil engineer, Castello Sforzesco, BYBORRE brings together a selection of their suppliers with the exhibition The Elephant in the Room. Südwolle Group, Santoni, Mayer & Cie., Groz-Beckert, The Woolmark Company together with furniture brands Lensvelt, Arco, Montis want to make the hidden and polluting textile industry more transparent, and BYBORRE is pulling them onto the stage. Co-founder of the 3d-textile company, Borre Akkersdijk is combative, “it’s not about us, or about business gain, we really want to tell people something, something really needs to change in our industry” he says in the evening at the dinner he gives with his partners.
The exhibition in one of the huge halls, papered with ancient carpets, does indeed want to educate. No seductive products, no design show, no branding. On a large world map, The Elephant in the Room shows the complexity of producing textiles, and how many trips around the world are required before a garment is in your closet. Not to mention what happens when the garment is allowed to return to dust.
The exhibition will be supported by several lectures including Bas Timmer of Sheltersuit, Amber Jae Slooten of The Fabricant and Sabine Marcelis.
As simple, educational and efficient as the exhibition is, the party that took place at another location in town last night was exuberant. After a Japanese meal quenched with a Whiskey, the party erupted, until late.
Milan is the lion’s den when it comes to textiles; I hope the fashion houses come to see, and then travel on to BYBORRE in Amsterdam, because if you want to be seduced it’s there.
Photos: David Heldt, co-founder GLUE amsterdam – connected by design