The Made in Italy myth is born, less than 100 years ago, thank to a group of smart people who decided to link, in the popular imagination, the Italian craftsmanship of todays to the bright Renaissance period. The very first fashion weeks – if the term “fashion week” can be used when speaking of those early times – took place in Florence, Renaissance’s crib since the beginning. It is not by chance then, that Dolce and Gabbana’s Alta Sartoria has been presented, on Wednesday, in the fabulous set of Florence’s Palazzo Vecchio. Specifically, the runway has been placed in the very famous Salone del Cinquecento, with its frescos and its historical heritage, transferred, with apparent solution of continuity, from Giorgio Vasari to the Italian creative duo.
Together with Vasari, Dolce&Gabbana’s fashion show mentioned many other names of the period, painters, philosophers and politicians (Cosimo de’ Medici’s portrait is on tunics and vests, framed by brocades and embroideries). Elements and suggestions from the Renaissance are several, more or less explicit. The quote “Cerca Trova” is embroidered on sartorial suits and double breast blazers, and it is a recall to a mythical Leonardo Da Vinci’s fresco, ruined by the painter himself and then covered by Vasari’s work. Trained eyes could try to find Da Vinci’s fresco under Vasari’s one even today. At the end of the fashion show, guests enjoyed traditional drummers and flags wavers in the exact same place where, at the end of XXV century, Dominican monk Girolamo Savonarola gave fire to several art works (books, paintings and more) in order to clean florentine society from its fabulous material excesses and teach them a more sober way of life.
The list could go on forever, but what’s important, at the end of the day, is the very strong message Dolce and Gabbana sew in their latest collection. A new renaissance indeed, that takes its move from traditional Italian heritage, made of beauty, creativity and enchant. The same creativity that sustains Italian craftsmanship, which is the very center of this collection.
Dolce and Gabbana have been, for many years now, influenced by religion – with Madonne, ex voto and baroque crosses. Today, their attention move to Planet Heart and, at the center of their Universe, there’s humanity with its prodigious (but scientific) evolution. The pandemic gave us way to reflect on our identity and our precariousness as species. Now that the worst seems to be gone, we should preserve joy for what we have been able to create during centuries. Our world could come to an end tomorrow, by natural disasters we cannot control or understand. Better to simply enjoy what we have today, all the beauty we are able to build around us.
Cover image courtesy Dolce&Gabbana