‘HÆNA’ Or What Is Fashionable In Reykjavik?

August 22, 2018  16:33  |  Fashion

First few days in Iceland felt like being thrown into a different world. It was dark. It was freezing. It was foreign. I remember thinking to myself “what did I get myself into?” and being sure I’ll go back home in a few days as no one seemed to have any sense of style or fashion. ‘What is fashionable in Reykjavik?’ was surely not on my mind at that moment.

Luca Reci

Photos – Gerardas Anusevičius ©

I came to Iceland to study fashion design in Listaháskóli Íslands for the semester. Before I never thought too much about Iceland apart from what we learned in school.  So, biting my teeth (as to not drop dead from the cold wind) I attended my lessons and got involved in this amazing project my university was doing with Icelandic Red Cross. And that was strike one for me. The environment.

Living in an economy of mass production, where everything is considerably cheap, and you can get almost anything you want just by going to the store, I would have never imagined that what you want can simply just not be there. Icelandic way of living resourceful and sustainable was surprising, but the creativity I saw astonished me.  Not having everything in the country to buy, left enough space to create and the result was mesmerizing.

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

Working with very competent teachers on what at the time we called ‘Red Cross project’, I started looking for myself more than ever. Always having an agenda towards women rights I searched for inequality we are still not even discussing and the collection “Hæna” hatched. Coated in bright colours, the main object of the collection is the chicken or hen, as a term used in Lithuania to call women who are simply put ‘stupid’. I wanted to ironize the fact, women’s sole purpose is still viewed in a remain pretty kind of way. With the help of newly discovered Icelandic culture and way of living, I looked into my own country’s Post-Soviet Union heritage and what it left us with from a new perspective.  For example, to create the scarfs seen in the collection I’ve collected pictures of the scarfs worn by my relatives during Soviet Union occupation and recreated their patterns only to change flowers and polka-dots with the images of chickens.

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

Always having an attitude towards things happening in the women rights movement, I’ve wanted to focus attention on horrible practices in the world that public knows little about. The main piece of the collection is a statement t-shirt, with a basketball sponsored by inspired logos. As a hidden message “Leblouh”, “Kusasa fumbi”, “FGM”, “Bacha posh”, “ala Kachuu” communicate women’s oppression and exploitation we ought to at least know about to eventually be able to stop it. In contrast to bright colours, the concept talks about the bigger picture and the details are there to guide you and let you see beyond the pretty image.

Luca Reci

Luca Reci - SwO magazine

My personal journey and growth in Iceland were inevitable and I’ve changed in many ways, but the one thing I am most thankful for is opening my eyes towards accepting one another as we are and not being afraid to talk about the difficult things, because at the end of the day difficult things are not that difficult if you let people around you in.

So really, ‘What is fashionable in Reykjavik?’. With no doubt – Freedom. As I have never felt so free to be myself before and to stand for what I believe in and even though Iceland is about so much more, freedom is the thing that Icelanders should be most proud of.

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

Luca Reci

HÆNA

Design – Luca Reci

Photographer – Gerardas Anusevičius

MUA – Justina Baublytė (Pale Rat makeup)

Model – Ugnė Barysaitė


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