Michele's Gucci Garden Hypnotises

Guccification or Alessandro Michele-fication? One of the most prolific designers to grace the storied House of Gucci since its inception, Michele ushered in his new era with the opening of the magical Gucci Garden event that kicked off Pitti Uomo’s 93rd edition in Florence. 


Gucci Garden at Pitti Uomo. Picture courtesy of Sofia Celeste.

Gucci Garden is a boutique that houses one of a kind, luxe pieces, as well as vintage ones and homeware that can only be purchased in the store. Housed in the Gucci Museo, the 14th century Florentine Palazzo della Mercanti, which sits in the city’s Piazza della Signoria Gucci Garden, will be open to the public today. A botanical festival of butterflies, brocade floral, mystical monkeys, and velvety Chinoiserie fabrics were among the accents that supported Michele's whimsical, hypnotic paradise. 
The event also unveiled the Gucci Osteria, which was spearheaded by Massimo Bottura, a three-Michelin-star chef, and the brand new Gucci Museum, which reflects, in large part, Michele’s eclectic style and fashions, and ushered out the Frida Giannini era.


Gucci Garden at Pitti Uomo. Picture courtesy of Sofia Celeste.

Highlights of the new exhibit, curated by art critic Maria Luisa Frisa, included pieces supporting the “Guccification” of the brand like all the different logos adopted by the house over the decades including Michele’s Gucci misspelled Guccy logo. The display culminated in the art work by Trevor Andrew who collaborated with Michele for the fall winter 2016 collection. Andrew’s kitsch illustrations re-figured the signature Gucci “G” in a world of space ships, dice, graffiti hearts, and phallic shapes. The six rooms of the museum featured signature Michele pieces including his retro revival prints and his very first unisex red pussy bow blouse and his puff sleeved bomber jacket inspired by Dapper Dan, known as the Harlem couturier. Elsewhere, vintage suitcases made of hemp, the famous “Leonardo” and “Pina” luggage designed by founder Guccio Gucci, and the mid century designs by Vittorio Accornero (famous for his “flora” illustrations and the silk scarves he designed for Princess Grace in the 1960s) were on display. Fur coats over the decades, some with gruesome accents like two fox heads staring at each other, were a salute to a more opulent, bygone era.  Late last year, Gucci decided to stop producing fur items. 


Gucci Garden at Pitti Uomo. Picture courtesy of Sofia Celeste.

Designs by Tom Ford, who greatly influenced Michele, were also showcased. Ford’s 90s-era body-hugging, white gown and silk Japanese erotica bomber jackets were just a few pieces chosen by Michele and Frisa to demonstrate how Ford made an impact on Gucci's current creative director. Gucci said that the space was meant to be filled with memorabilia, ephemera, and contemporary art, “exploring the eclectic creativity that lies at the heart of Gucci.”  The symbol of the event, a mysterious eye, reminiscent of the Masonic Eye of Providence was chosen by Michele to underscore the “hypnotic” nature of his new world. His slogans “What are we going to do with all this future?” and “Tomorrow is now yesterday” were scribbled in mysterious black writing along the walls, a strong sign that Michele’s influence will not be remembered in merely an aesthetic way for years to come.
 

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