Design Catwalk
Emo De Medeiros and the Mempo Protecting Angel

This African version of the masquerade, Brazilian carnival or Halloween, that Beninese children perform during the period of the Christmas holidays, is a transcultural phenomenon relatively unique in Africa. It is also in the image of the hybridization induced by globalisation, and of the digitization and technological multiplicity required by the aesthetics of contexturation.



This series consists in fragments of armours that present two faces, as the Roman god Janus. The two pieces reproduced here are helmets.

Today is victory over yourself of yesterday. Taking the Void as the Way, you will see the Way as Void.

Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645)

The Mempo series takes its name from the traditional war masks worn by samurai in combat. They are all composed from a mask reproducing the helmet of the comic book hero Iron Man covered in feathers, behind which are displayed films composed of fragments of video diaries, critical moments, and quotes from The Book of Five Rings, by Miyamoto Musashi. Each Mempo is also linked to a protector angel. In the two examples of the series presented here are figured Metatron, the celestial scribe, guardian of secrets and archetype of the human, and Nuriel, the one that brings the knowledge of the divine, the interpreter of prophecies (he is represented in the Virgin of the Rocks), Leonardo da Vinci.

I have always been fascinated by pagan religions and its ritual costumes. Masques have always been one of the main elements for all tribes and peoples in the world, no matter where.

Emo de Medeiros mixes his cultural heritage with new digital saints and simbols. He lives and works in Paris and in Cotonou (Benin). He graduated from Ecole Normale Supérieure (Paris) and continued his training at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts (Paris), where he first started focusing on video, while continuing to explore different disciplines of digital arts: music, graphic design, 3D modeling, and photography. His first video pieces explored the theme of instensity (intensity of the instant).

He works also with 3D modeling and electronic music (Mana and eMoodz are his two albums). He also developed his interest in video, directing a music videos and an experimental short fiction film (The Judgment).
He then moved to Boston where he attended courses at the Massachusetts College of Art (MassArt) and directed his second film, a documentary entitled What Makes a Fighter.
He later reintegrated a more conceptual and experimental dimension to his work and began to shoot short video sequences, designing “electronic canvasses” made of randomized loops of images and music, displayed in traditional paintings’ frames. He also pursues the creation of “fetishized” and “electronized” artefacts which include the use of video and connected devices, as well as phone calls and bull horns.

juliana de nicola. Senior Fashion and Art Editor
Juliana is an italian-austrian artist and designer. After academical art-studies and fashion Ba she started working as a free-lance in fashion business covering different roles to feed her curiosity, while her personal projects are growing out of her mouth and ears restless. She was born in Vienna in the past century, loves her savage dogs, lives now in Florence, and travels every time she can.


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