A visit from Gabriela Hearst and the Chloé team
Laban Coblentz, Head of Communication
The ITER Project is renowned for being on the cutting-edge of many fields of design—but fashion design, haute couture, is not one of them. So it was a fascinating collision of two worlds when ITER recently played host to a team from Chloé, the luxury Paris fashion house, and its creative director, Gabriela Hearst.
On site | A visit from Gabriela Hearst and the Chloé team
Named by the Financial Times as one of the top 25 Most Influential Women of 2021, Ms Hearst has become a trailblazer driving sustainability in fashion. When she learned about ITER and fusion—also, she says, through a 2021 Financial Times article—it was a revelation. A visit to ITER made the top of her wish list.
The Chloé team ''found inspiration'' in the ITER construction project. Ms Hearst (centre, top step) called her visit to ITER ''probably one of the most fulfilling days of my professional career.''
"Anyone that has been close to me has heard my intensity & focus on Fusion for the last five months," she wrote. "It was a privilege and probably one of the most fulfilling days of my professional career to visit ITER as part of our Fusion research with the Chloé Team."
What draws a fashion designer to the engineering and science of fusion energy? For Gabriela Hearst, the narrative can be traced, in a single continuous thread, to her roots growing up on a Uruguayan farm. Whether designing a new fabric, sourcing a supply chain, running her family farm (she still does!), or learning about a source of energy that could transform the future, life is about staying true to our connection to the earth, to leaving a better planetary legacy. Within this vision, fusion is a natural fit, "part of our inspiration that will provoke learning and sharing a pathway solution to climate success."
The Chloé team donned their "ITER fashion gear"—hard hats, reflective vests, gloves, and steel toed safety boots—with aplomb, taking in the scale and scope of ITER components, the details of the Assembly Hall and Tokamak pit, with an eye for detail and patterns. To see ITER through the eyes of Gabriela Hearst, see the work of Chloé videographer Alex Pommier on Instagram here. Or stay tuned: rumour has it that a fusion-focused fashion show may soon be in the works ...
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