Sensuality not always, and not necessarily, means baring it all. On the contrary, shyness and reticence can be truly seductive: in this case, in fact, it’s the mind, not the eyes, that fills the gaps. Ter et Bantine is a style – reductionist and raw, concrete and cerebral, pure, subtle – in which what is not there is just as important, or maybe more important, of what is there. Manuela Arcari is the author: her precise, decisive look of a woman who creates womenswear does not translate into a formula; in fact, she offers infinite ways of being.
Ter et Bantine was born in 1992. A pragmatic dreamer, Manuela Arcari looks at the world around her and condenses her observations in a sign retaining a quality not usually associated with fashion design: dignity. She designs for a woman who is real, not fictional, living real-life, concrete situations. For this polymorphous character, Manuela creates clothing that erases pre-conceived distinctions. Design is controlled but not monastic; pureness, sometimes, opens up to decorative abandon, in a new way. The tone is assertive, but not oppressive; severity includes grace, femininity has the dry anti-romanticism of masculinity. The expression is fluid: an open, inclusive language. Manuela Arcari knows when to stop. She also knows that silence speaks volumes, and seduces.
Ter et Bantine is a wardrobe: an open repertoire of possibilities. Construction is the result of intense study, because the body and its movements are not abstract concepts for Manuela Arcari. The infinite possibilities of this modular style highlight the personality of the wearer, not the ego of the designer. The tone is concentrated, rarefied at times, yet, between the folds, the clean cuts and the geometries, one can discover memories and emotions. Simplicity, after all, is complex, full of nuances.
GFM Industria is Ter et Bantine’s alma mater. The headquarters are in Granarolo Faentino, Ravenna, in what was once the Eridania sugar factory: four brownstone buildings in the middle of a pinewood. Here all phases of both design and production are carried, translating into a product that is one hundred percent Italian. The enterprise is headed by Manuela Arcari, who is the president, and David Agus, who is the CEO. Determined and open to dialogue the first, a lover of doubt and excellence the second, the couple work in unison, mixing a taste, flair and knowledge all their own.
In 1999 the firm opened a one-thousand square-meters space, flooded in light, in Milan’s Via San Francesco d’Assisi. It functions as both showroom and show space. Worldwide distribution is carried by two other showrooms: one in Paris and one, just opened, in New York.
The collection is sold in 140 hi-end points of sale worldwide.
GFM Industria also produces Hache and, under license, the Jean-Paul Gaultier casual collection.