Born in Rome but based in Florence, Matisa is an excellent example of how the music and fashion industries overlap. Although she is an electronic music producer and deejay by trade, fashion is an inescapable part of her lifestyle. In 2018, she completed her MA in Fashion Product Management from the internationally acclaimed Polimoda Fashion School. Since then, Matisa has been collaborating with both established and emerging designers.
Her music career also seems promising following her feature on Rinse FM; one of electronic music’s mould-breaking stations. Matisa was welcomed onto the radio show by Berghain resident DJ Paramida. Matisa’s guest mix for Rinse FM stayed true to her love of the 90s and progressive house music. The house mix packed a punch with plenty of breaks, acid house blends and even some ’80s tones.
As an avid follower of Œ Magazine, she wanted to catch up with us whilst she was in Berlin to chat fashion and her music plans for 2021. For this interview, Matisa has teamed up with independent designers REAMEREI and Vivetta to showcase their work.
Œ: What’s the story behind your artist name ‘Matisa’?
Matisa: My real name is Isabella Matilde. So Matisa is simply a mix of the two. I wanted to choose a name that I would like, and I thought the combination of my two names sounded really good!
Œ: How long has making music been a part of your life? How did you get into it?
Matisa: I began studying music when I was six years old. I started with the piano, then progressed to the oboe and eventually into electronic music. It was a very natural process. 7 years ago, I learned to mix vinyls, and I haven’t stopped since then!
I like producing music as a personal form of expression. In 2015, I started pursuing music professionally, trying to make myself known to more people. Starting in Italy, moving across Europe. I hope I’ll soon be known across the world.
Œ: What genre would you define your sound by?
Matisa: If I could define myself, I would be wrong in doing so… “I am the music I like”.
Œ: What are you working on at the moment?
Matisa: I’m working on my next releases. 2021 will be a year full of surprises… I am working in a style office, it’s an environment that gives me a lot of stimuli. Music and fashion are merged in my worldview.
Œ: What 3 words best describe your mix for Rinse FM?
Matisa: Energetic, evocative and joyful
Œ: How much do you feel your music influences your aesthetic?
Matisa: Very much so. The music I produce is an expression of my aesthetic and my clothes are an expression of my music.
Œ: If you could be teleported to any fashion era when would it be?
Matisa: I am a big fan of the ’70s Counterculture. Particularly the years when personal taste and the free aesthetic choice was born. In the ’70s era, young people tended to mix various styles and cultures imaginatively. Another fascinating evolution was undoubtedly the introduction of unisex fashion and glam rock: the androgynous style, use of sequins, lurex, lycra and bright colours. Brightly coloured make-up and hair. The undisputed symbol of this era is David Bowie, who has always been my legend.
Œ: Who is your fashion icon?
Matisa: The first fashion book I read was the one about the story of Elsa Schiaparelli, a woman who was much more than a stylist. She is my idol because she was already a progressive, I still remember when she said: “A dress is not just fabric: a dress is a thought”. It’s hard to find people like her today.
Œ: Why is Œ one of your favourite fashion publications?
Matisa: I like it because it tells the stories behind fashion not by promoting trends but by following interesting and unique editorial content. I enjoy browsing through the online and print magazine to find highly inspiring content. I hate to go with the flow of the trend. I love to go with the flow of beauty.
Check out Matisa’s Rinse Fm mix here.
Talent – Isabella Erculei aka Matisa
Styling and Art Direction – Sarah Venturini
Photography – Matteo Strocchia and Marco Servina
Fashion – REAMEREI and Vivetta
Hair and Makeup – Isabell Taranto
Production and Fashion Assistance – Nadia Lametta