As the Italian brand turns 100 this year, Gucci celebrated its anniversary show with Aria, a special film co-directed by award-winning photographer and director Floria Sigismondi and Alessandro Michele. Drawing inspiration from its strong history of equestrian influences, we saw an electrifying runway lined with flashlights, whips, helmets and bags, as well as horse bit harnesses over suits.
“I found out that 100 years had passed. In the show, I included elements from how I envision the mythology of the brand”
Referencing Savoy Hotel as a throwback to Guccio Gucci working as a porter for The Savoy in England, the collection was greatly inspired by the aristocratic dress sense of the men before Gucci was founded in Florence. The soundtrack featured the likes of Lil Pump and a rap by Rick Ross and Bhad Bhabie—clearly showing the brand’s effort in staying relevant in a Gen Z universe. “I found out that 100 years had passed. In the show, I included elements from how I envision the mythology of the brand,” says Michele.
A masterful crossover between two powerhouses, Gucci and Balenciaga (also under the Kering stable), this collection is certainly one for the books. The iconic shapes from Balenciaga’s earlier collections saw a remade version of the padded hip jacket of autumn/winter 2016, spring/summer 2017’s spandex peplum top and leggings and autumn/winter 2017’s black and white ensembles.
A nod to Tom Ford’s era at Gucci, Michele also replicated recognisable pieces such as the red velvet tuxedo from autumn/winter 1996 that made Gwyneth Paltrow famous, crystal-embellished heels from 1998 and the decadent pink fur of autumn/winter 2001.
It was a Gucci universe through and through: the end of the show saw the models transported to a Gucci club dancing the night away, then to a Gucci utopia fantasy filled with cockatoos, bunnies and wild horses. This fun and lavish escapism is what we loved most about Gucci—and entirely appropriate for its centennial anniversary. Forget wearing your heart on your sleeves—it’s about holding your Gucci heart clutch in your hands.