Milan opens with Gucci
Gucci kicked off Milan Fashion with a hyper charged collection, staged in a massive set where the Ancient World met a downtown nightclub.
Though they all were dressed for a great party in Brooklyn or Berlin, Tokyo or Shanghai, the cast marched underneath a series of giant statues: a smiling Buddha, angry Sphinx, stern Julius Caesar and triumphant Perseus with the bloody head of Medusa. The clothes mixed all that and more. Michele riffed across the centuries and cultures too: from Ming dynasty princess to clowns worthy of Picasso to Dracula style capes frosted with glittering baubles.
Beauty and brains combined like the sweater that read: “Don’t Marry a Mitford.” Add in plenty of classy men’s suits with various wacky embroidery and disco tracksuits – all of them sure-fire winners at the cash register. Before a finale, with a studious beauty in a faded pink chiffon plissé floor-length dress; her shoulders covered with crystals and her eyes covered with pearly glasses. On her arm, the latest Michele inside joke, a gold and black purse with the logo misspelled 'Guccy'.
“I have to soak myself in Antiquity in order to make things new,” smiled Alessandro Michele in the backstage, after being embraced by a hoard of creative nobility. From the Oscar winning Italian grand dame producer Marina Cicogna to photographer Mick Rock, who currently shoots Gucci’s resort campaigns.
His program notes were more intellectual. Entitling the show "The Act of Creation as an Act of Resistance," Michele quoted Albert Camus, asserting “the revolt challenges the existing in the name of what is missing but could be.”
The collection was a timely reminder that while Michele certainly works similar themes in many of his shows, he is definitely breaking new ground – essentially by fine-tuning his vision of modern-day, over-the-top opulence.
Business could not better at Gucci. One had only to look at the face of CEO Marco Bizzarri – who had the foresight to hire the unknown Michele. He has the biggest smile in Europe these days.
“We did 2.9 billion euros in revenue in the first half, which means we will end the year as the second biggest luxury brand in the world. Still behind Louis Vuitton, but overtaking Chanel and Hermès. Which is, well, pretty good!” said Bizzari with a monumental grin.
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