AntibodyTherapy by Cifica is a small indenpendent brand based in Florence. The brand’s mission is to provoke, to find connection and comfort by using deconstructive creations and by creating discomfort.
For the brand there are no limits, it embodies self-acceptance, self- awareness, self-identification and self- expression for those who do not accept being who they are not, regardless of their gender or the perception of others. The final goal of the brand is to be avant- garde , giving people who seek a product that does not connect to conformity a tool to express themselves.
Name of the Spring/Summer 2023 collection ‘Apeiro-Thanoto’ is a word that Yubeier Zheng, the designer, created by combining two words ‘Apeirophobia’ and ‘ Thanatophobia’, (Apeirophobia is the excessive fear of the infinite and the innumerable, and instead thanatofobia translates as ‘the fear of death’.
So inspired by this complex ideology of “that the supreme values lose all value”, “all this is meaningless”, linking the feeling that nihilism gives, with the sense of negativity and despair, with deep thoughts and emotions that people have under the influence of the pandemic. The designer was inspired by the avant-apocalypse trend, combining a post-war Japanese dance movement for the liberation of the human body and emotions called Ankoku Butoh which means “dance of total darkness” photographed by Joel-Peter Witkin, Yubeier Zheng convinced to achieve a punk style with an iota of ‘scissor romanticism’ using crooked silhouettes, fabrics and manipulations with destroyed and stained effects and textures to express a quite dark gothic and convey the fear and frustrations that all of humanity has in this circumstance today.
Model:Chen Li @chen_liz
Photography + Art Direction: Guanbo Wang @daniel.w.g.b
Make-up + hair: Yubeier Zheng @_cificaisalien
Designer + Styling: Yubeier Zheng @_cificaisalien
KREEP. IN CONVERSATION WITH YUBEIER ZHENG
Can you tell us a little about your childhood cultural background and when did you decide to become a designer?
I was born and raised in China and have wanted to be creative since I was 5 years old and I have been studying art ever since.When I turned 17, I decided to become a designer.
How does your creative process work? Do you have a specific strategy or just ‘go with the flow’?
I’m a more of a go-with-the-flow kind of person. I do not necessarily look on the Internet to see what’s trending, but it always starts with doing researches about something that has to do with what’s currently on my mind.
What about education in the fashion industry? Do you think is important before launching your own brand and why?
Personally, I think it’s very crucial to get as much education as you can before launching your brand or even just for pursuing a career in the fashion industry because education helps you gain the knowledge you need about how the industry works and how to have a creative process.
What’s it like to see someone wearing your creations?
It is a kind of satisfaction that cannot be put into words. In general, the feeling of being recognized and appreciated gives me a sense of satisfaction.
What’s your favorite place where you feel more inspired?
Anywhere that has a creative and calming atmosphere and nice music. Good music and artistic decorations always give my brain good stimulations.
How challenging is the business part for a brand like yours?
To be honest, it’s quite difficult because there’re a lot of things you need to consider, such as what budget you can invest, how to mass produce your design, what kind of factory you should choose for production, what is your business model,etc.. When you don’t have a professional team, everything will be more complicated for you.
How challenging is a start for a fashion brand?
It’s hard to start on your own, for example, I’m just getting ready to start my brand, but doing it alone means that you need to invest lot of time and money for the initial preparation so it can be stressing sometimes.
Share with us your future plans.
For my next project, I would like to do something based on human relations, as in how we connect with people around us and what human connections mean to us, there will be a lot of fabric manipulations and if possible I would like to develop an installation art as an extension.