The Gucci platform for new designers: win-win?
To receive the Vogue Business newsletter, register here.
When Jordan Bowen and Luca Marchetto of London-based brand Jordanluca found an email from Gucci in their inbox, they initially rejected it as spam. In fact, Gucci was inviting them to be among 13 brands participating in Gucci Fest last year and Gucci Vault, the brand’s new platform for emerging talent.
Gucci’s desire to be the go-to brand for Generation Z takes on new impetus with the arrival of Gucci Vault, launched today with a physical event in Milan; thereafter existing long term at safe.gucci.com, as an “online experimental space”. In addition to Jordanluca, the list of participants includes LVMH Prize finalist Rui Zhou and CFDA /Vogue Fashion Fund Finalist Collina Strada, Ahluwalia, Shanel Campbell, Stefan Cooke, Cormio, Charles de Vilmorin, Yueqi Qi, Rave Review, Gui Rosa, Bianca Saunders and Boramy Viguier.
Gucci Vault follows the Gucci Fest short film program that took place in November 2020, conceptualized by Creative Director Alessandro Michele. The designers involved all trace their relationship with the house to this surprise email. Jordanluca was not the only beneficiary initially puzzled. Collina Strada founder Hillary Taymour retrieved the email from her Junk Folder at 3 a.m., while Priya Ahluwalia initially thought it was an advertisement.
This isn’t the first time that Gucci has explored innovative collaborations – or “contaminations,” as Michele called them. In January, Gucci applied its 1970s colourways and quirky floral prints to The North Face outerwear. For Fall / Winter 2021, it featured “mutual contamination” with the Kering Balenciaga brand. “Why can’t a fashion house with a creative director also have space for expressive, aesthetic and social contaminations? Michele asks in a statement. “The greatest gift from Gucci, in the end, is never to stay the same; never to grow old.