Gucci Cruise 2018 in Florence

Gucci Cruise 2018 in Florence

How do you top a cruise collection at Westminster Abbey? By taking a brand back to its roots at the Pitti Palace in Florence – one time home to the Medici family and once considered the epicentre of artistic creation in Italy, where Renaissance splendours by Titian, Rubens, Michelangelo, Pietro da Cortona and Raphael are still displayed in its Palatine Gallery. It was here, surrounded by these masterpieces in oil, marble and bronze, in a room that can only be described breathtakingly lavish, that Alessandro Michele chose to stage the Gucci cruise 2018 collection.

Gucci Cruise 2018 in Florence

Gucci Cruise 2018 in Florence

[As a quick aside, Michele had originally set his sights on the Parthenon in Athens, but Gucci found out the hard way that not every architectural marvel is open to hosting a fashion extravaganza set within its ancestral walls, or ruins for that matter. The Greek authorities weren’t having any of it. All the more for Florence then, which is after all the birthplace of Gucci. Oh, and let’s not forget that Gucci is sponsoring the restoration of Pitti’s Boboli Gardens too – so the shift to Italy was quite convenient really!]

Michele’s called the collection ‘Renaissance rock’n’roll’ which did the looks something of a disservice – there’s never anything genre-specific about his clothes which seemingly segue through the decades and even the centuries.

The Cruise 2018 collection was therefore Florentine Renaissance taken to its core concept: the pursuit of classic beauty and the mysteries of the natural world. The 15th century references were mainly seen in the ornate silver and gold wreath-like headdresses but there was so much more at play: medieval-style capes, lumberjack shirts, Gucci boys’ embroidered bomber jackets, ‘far out’ 70s prints, flares, GG monogrammed puff sleeves, flea market get-ups and gossamer gowns fit for an Empress (think what Botticelli’s Venus would have worn to a party).

The proverbial tread that held it all together? Michele magpie tendencies: couture-worthy embroidery, adornments, floral prints and animal motifs – otherwise known as the singular and standout tropes that have come to define him as a designer. It wasn’t a collection that signaled a ‘rebirth’ as such; there weren’t any huge surprises bar the rebranding of Gucci as the more playful and self-parodying ‘Guccy’ on t-shirts, jewellery and sweats. But it stands to reason that we should be treated to more of the same when it comes to this designer: just like the Renaissance, Michele’s artistry isn’t one that flourishes fast and furiously, it’s there to be enjoyed season after season, which seemingly gets better and better.

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Gucci Cruise 2018 in Florence