Atelier Alba Amicorum is a wearable art and luxury scarf studio and shop based in London’s historic Belgravia mews. The brand, founded by artist and graphic designer Darshana Shilpi Rouget, opened its doors in London’s historic Belgravia in the year 2020. Atelier ALBA AMICORUM specialises in wearable textile art in collaboration with international artists across different disciplines.
Each of the original artworks is meticulously printed in limited editions on the finest silks, cashmere, and other natural fabrics by a skilled family of Italian artisans in Como. They have lent their expertise and work to some of the most prestigious fashion houses in the world. A numbered certificate of authenticity accompanies each limited edition piece, and the scarves are all packaged in a bespoke box made from wheat straw paper. Following a zero-waste policy, each scarf comes in a reusable fine cotton muslin pouch with a recycled ALBA AMICORUM tag which can be planted in soil and transformed into wildflowers. Gift boxes are available, handmade in Japan, from Paulownia wood.
ALBA AMICORUM takes inspiration from Renaissance friendship books (“alba amicorum” in Latin). Young men and women in 16th-century Europe would fill their alba amicorum with musings and contributions from the influencers of their day. Such journals were used by German and Dutch as they travelled between universities, inviting other students and academics to contribute with inscriptions, artworks, poems, and profiles of places and people. These books have been described as an early form of social media, connecting friends around the world through literary and artistic connections.
In this spirit, Darshana uses the scarf as a canvas for expressing thoughts and ideas through collaborations with artists and friends around the world.
“The scarf is the canvas. It is a simple square – allowing creativity by the user… how it folds, how it drapes… It’s about exploring art in a different way. On an intimate personal level”.
By liberating art from its frame, Atelier Alba Amicorum scarves tell a unique story while reframing how we look, interact and feel through art.
The atelier’s global collaborators include the legendary artist Man Ray through the Man Ray Trust; from America – painter Mary Jones, photographer James T Murray, artist Deni Javas and writer Ross Klavan; from Mongolia – artist Shagdarjavin Chimmedorj and India – artist Babuji Rajendra Shilpi.
The studio also represents artwork and prints by collaborating artists, including French-Indonesian photographer Joel Benguigui and ballerinas – Juliet Burnett from Australia and Misako Kato from Japan.