Ellias Kenneth Fullmore
Jackets featuring historical paintings depicting Blacks/POC from the Classical & Renaissance era shake up the fashion industry.
(Black PR Wire) “In a nutshell, we make clothes and accessories for proud global citizens of color,” says Ellias Kenneth Fullmore, founder of Oakland fashion start-up Saint Maurice. The brand takes its name from the 3rd center Nubian leader of a Roman legion and patron saint of imperial Germany. “ I think Black people and POC want to see something different. I decided to make clothes that highlight the contributions of people of color in the development of western civilization and world history. We are not really focused on ‘Black history’ the way it is typically taught. Rather we aim to recontextualize the depiction of Black and Brown people in world history, in a way that makes people look and feel good about who they are.”
The highlight of the winter collection is a series of lightweight bomber jackets depicting historically significant images of Black people:
The Black Madonna: This jacket sports the image of The Black Madonna of Częstochowa, a 14th-century Polish relic depicting a Black Virgin Mary and child
The Maurice XV1: Depicts the company’s namesake as rendered by 16th century German Renaissance painter Matthias Grünewald.
The Belle: The image of 18th Century British heiress Dido Elizabeth Belle and her cousin painted by renowned Scottish painter David Martin graces this colorful green and pink piece.
The Dynasty: This stark, mostly black and white jacket displays several regal members of the royal court of the Ethiopian Solomonic Dynasty between the 19th and 20th centuries. Emperors Haile Selassie I and Menelik II are prominently displayed.
“This is just the tip of the iceberg,” says Fullmore, a Morehouse graduate and Bioinformatic software designer in Silicon Valley. “I want everyone to wonder why we didn’t learn this stuff in school. We all know the answer. I just really really like making people ask that question.”