Gucci’s Aria: 100 years of past versus a hacked present

This year Gucci celebrates their first 100 years. The first celebration, in the middle of April, coincided with the presentation of their new collection: Aria. That was the occasion when the new interpretation of iconic models celebrated and betrayed the brand’s heritage. With the complicity (as well) of Balenciaga

In the number of those who, for a thousand reasons, are recreating their archives in a more or less imaginative way, Gucci could not miss. Also because, maybe, they are one of the few brands who have a personal reason to do so, apart from any rhetoric about style or sustainability. In 2021, Gucci celebrates 100 years of past and they have started by looking to the future, with a collection based on a series of peculiar twists. The collection was defined by designer Alessandro Michele “an alchemic factory of contaminations, where everything is in contact with everything. An “everything” involving, unexpectedly, even Balenciaga.

100 years of past

The Aria collection enhances the heritage of the fashion house. It draws inspiration from their archives, so, celebrating some staples and, at the same time, betraying them. How? Through new interpretations of great classics, imagination and  iconic models. For example, the ones designed by Tom Ford. Homages to the history of the brand go beyond this and they are a whole lot. Such as the monogram in honor of the founder, Guccio Gucci, who was there as a guru, starting from the location chosen for the video catwalk, that you can watch again below. Or the famous Flora printing. And again: the equestrian world conjured by the stirrup-shaped buckle on bags and belts. The traditional elements of the fashion house (loafers, riding boots, bags) coexist with bold, almost fetish, accessories, such as collars, crops, laces, corsets and leather buckles.

Hacking and sharing

The short movie directed by Alessandro Michele together with Flora Sigismondi presents the result of a “hacking laboratory”, as the creative director himself called it. The collection knew how to “steal” from the past to evolve and reconnect to the present, with a multitude of leather accessories: belt bags, bags with various shapes and sizes, jockey hats. But let us take you one step further. That is the step leading to the collaboration with Balenciaga, another brand from the Kering group. Items of clothing and accessories with a double logo for “a game born almost for fun”, Alessandro Michele and Demna Gvasalia, the creative soul of Balenciaga, say in chorus. Much more prosaically, a (well-done) experiment of balance between super classic and super excessive, opening the door to new kinds of business.

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