Back to the roots

Genova rediscovers its heritage

Jeans are from America. Not! Levi Strauss might have tailored the first pair of jeans but in Genova the cloth was made. So the first annual Genova Jeans has opened its doors and the whole city is worshiping Indigo. With backing from Diesel and Candiani Denim it seemed like the whole city of Genova was proud to rediscover its roots with every window in every shop decked out in the Indigo cloth. The festival was built around the following pillars:

Candiani Denim

With the foundation of this festival being sustainability, the iconic Italian jeans-manufacturer Candiani set up an exhibition showing the current state of jeans, deepening the discussion of the negative sides of the fabric: Worker exploitation, incredible amounts of water consumption and the high demand of fast fashion garments. On the way out of the exhibition they presented how the future will look like: A stretchable jeans fabric that is 100% compostable.

Way into the exhibition

Way out of the exhibition


Heritage brand Diesel also played a key role in the festival with different showcases around the city. At one spot they showed a replica of the first jeans fabric ever documented from over 300 years ago. Further they opened their archive and staged a showroom with classic outfits from the past. Along those pieces was also the first ever suit made by the Diesel founder Renzo Rosso himself.

Replica of the first ever documented jeans

First suit made by Renzo Rosso


A true highlight was the big art exhibit at the Metelino showspace. It’s a big industrial complex which was turned into a gallery showcasing 35 different works. 37 international artists were “confronted” with 2 by 2 meters of denim fabric supplied by Candiani and nothing but their creative freedom. It was interesting to see how these artists used the fabric as canvas that once again showed the deep connection between Genova and Jeans.

Genova fragments in typical Genovese colors by Ugo La Pietra.

The starry sky above Genova by Letizia Cariello

Garibaldi in jeans

Paying homage to the “hero of two worlds”, Giuseppe Garibaldi, the unificator of Italy, English denim artist Ian Berry showcased his version of the famous painting by Gerolamo Induno showing Garibaldi in jeans and the infamous red shirt. Berry recreated it fully with the iconic blue fabric.

Ian Berry’s Garibaldi in jeans

Title-, second, third and penultimate image: © Eco Age Ltd.