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When Italian fashion powerhouse Ermenegildo Zegna debuted its Fall/Winter 2014 Men’s Collection live from Milan on January 11, much of the extensive worldwide publicity centered on the fashion show’s astronomical theme, created by internationally renowned astrophysicist and author, Dr. Fiorella Terenzi, a former model who teaches physics and astronomy at Florida International University (FIU) in Miami.

Terenzi, whose doctoral research pioneered the field of Acoustic Astronomy, in which radiation emitted by heavenly bodies is converted into sound, returned home to lend her scientific and creative expertise to the famous Milanese design house’s ground-breaking project.

Zegna’s acclaimed designer, Stefano Pilati, sought to create “a truly universal aesthetic message”- and the first union of fashion and astronomy. “No one has done anything like this before,” said Gildo Zegna, the company’s chief executive. The New York Times reported that “Zegna’s Very Big Bang! This fashion event seems more like a science center’s version of a journey into space than a catwalk show.”

Dr. Terenzi’s space sounds formed an integral part of the show’s soundtrack, and the dramatic celestial images and scientific vision she supervised served as a cutting-edge 4k Imax-resolution backdrop, allowing Zegna to define a bold new future for men’s fashion.

The message from FIU’s Dr. Terenzi is clear: “Reason and imagination are not enemies, but rather partners in appreciation of the wonders of the Universe. This is clearly exemplified by this historic fusion of the art of fashion with the science of astronomy.” See and hear the video documenting this dynamic event at ZEGNA here (also listed here).

Only FIU can lay claim to involvement with this first-ever collaboration between astrophysics and fashion generated by the show’s astronomical theme. This is a cool, high-tech, cutting-edge collaboration that appeals to our students and will broaden FIU’s reach.

Learn more about this collaboration.