Barena Venezia Fall/Winter 2011 Outerwear. Italy.
As an Italian brand founded in 1961 and based in Venice, Barena’s offerings are strongly inspired by their heritage. The three presidents of the label, Massimo Pigozzo, Giovanni Zara and Francesca Zara pay specific attention to the local culture, tradition, and textiles when drafting each collection. The brand name itself is in fact derived from the Venetian term baro, meaning a salt-water lagoon, which is essentially what lies beneath the isles of Venice. With a desire to support the rich textile culture that has long been a trademark of Italy, Barena focuses on using high quality natural textiles from wools to linens, often reproducing fabrics from the archives of historically prestigious Italian mills. Similar attention is paid to the research of the “peculiar” traditional dress codes from the Venice of yore for details and overarching themes that they then reinterpret in Barena’s seasonal collections; finding unique garments referenced in museums, antique markets, or vintage books. Historically, Venetian dress was dictated by their surrounding environment and an economy based around hunting, fishing, and agriculture. Barena applies the same principles of utility and long-lasting quality that were so integral back then to recreate the distinctive Venetian style they define as “lagunare”. While a much smaller percentage of men are involved in such activities today, the practicality of Barena’s clothing still applies to the greater amount of daily life in contemporary society.