The home: the materialisation of our buried self-intimacy; the exposure of our life’s hidden depths; the playground for our most honest expression. Part one of Gucci Fest dances in the conforms of identity: a protest against the binary, the restricted, the societal limitations. Day one flaunts the fluency of existence.
The ‘Home’ symbolises the safe space, the walls which protects us from the outside gaze and critique. This setting establishes day one as an extremely private (yet extremely relatable) liberation of self. Waking up with Silvia Calderoni in a sheer lace jumpsuit, a GG tulle lingerie set and gold mules, we are shown the unprecedented fragility of the self. The beautiful delicacy of lace speaks almost of a vulnerability, yet this is later contrasted by dramatized slipping on of gold mules, presenting a crossover between our quietest moments and the power of expression we hold. This first scene is the epitome of being, the moments before the world seeps in. In other words, this opening scene is the beginning of the journey of self.
Look 7 and look 8 images via GucciFest website
‘This revolution is going to be about love, about changing desires. It’s going to be about changing desires, of transforming desires, Silvia. And you know that’. Alessandro Michele’s direction of Gucci Fest responds to the concept of classification, the contours of identity which are anciently rooted in the theory of gender, the belief that in existing we must conform to outdated rules, providing unnecessary explanations of self. As Silvia watches gender theorist Paul B. Preciado, her physical morning awakening almost symbolises the awakening of society’s concept of identity – travelling from the spoken subject of conformity to the rebellion against conformity. Silvia is not overtly gendered nor is she the ‘modern patriarchal and colonial logic’ we hear about. She is Gucci. And now, Gucci is interdisciplinary: a merge between fashion and existence, the difference between simply living and being, wearing and dressing.
Look 9 and look 11 images via GucciFest website
Responding to Preciado, Silvia wears a gorgeously pastel silk georgette gown with sequined embroidery, a scene of sheer thrills and ruffles, an air of unapologetic femininity. But this is gown is a personal response, a fight against the society we have been thrown into, an embodiment of ‘the reversal of that logic of oppression’. Silvia has woken up. Like the ‘monsters’ of society – the ‘other’, the non-conforming, the cast aside, the dangerous and the not quite simple enough to be accepted and understood – Silvia dresses for herself. As she drops a floral dress off her balcony, (a replica of Allesandro’s design debuted in A/W 2015), Billie Eilish soundtracks a catwalk of Gucci’s latest collection. In dropping this piece, Gucci symbolically forges the path to new expression, be it physical or theoretical. Gucci, like Silvia, is responding to the damaging process of identification: a sport slogan top paired with a midi tweed skirt, a red leather skirt worn with a sheer top, a floral blouse with denim shorts, a bold shirt with clashing blue bottoms and trainers. ‘I think therefore I am’ sings Eilish… I am worthy of my own existence, I am enough in my own identity, identification no longer exists.
Look 12 and look 13 images via GucciFest website
We are living in a new period, Gucci seems to say. It is time to re-write our identity, to take hold of our lives. Gucci stands alone from society; they present a new expression, their clothes represent a new life. We are invited to buy not just fashion but philosophy, an experience, an alternative perspective of being. As we watch Austine Osayi Osawe Turay cycle round and round, it is evident now this a beginning with no end. It is an unending process, a new form of living. Gucci is inviting a new gaze; they are leading the way.
Words by Hannah Emery
Graphics by Victoria Zhao