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Gucci and Balenciaga come together for an unofficial collaboration

Peony Hirwani
·2-min read
<p>Gucci ‘ARIA’ 2021 show premiered on 15 April</p> (Gucci/ YouTube)

Gucci ‘ARIA’ 2021 show premiered on 15 April

(Gucci/ YouTube)

Gucci has unveiled a new “ARIA” collection mixed with Balenciaga’s Demna Gvasalia’s silhouettes, emblazoned hourglass bags, high-rise boots, and jewellery.

However, it wasn’t an official collaboration between the Italian and Spanish houses. According to a press release from Gucci, creative director Alessandro Michele considers it a part of his “hacking lab,” in which he has “plundered the nonconformist rigour of Demna Gvasalia.”

Michele explained: “Gucci becomes for me a hacking lab, made of incursions and metamorphoses ... I have plundered the nonconformist rigor of Demna Gvasalia and the sexual tension of Tom Ford.”

To mark Gucci’s 100th anniversary, the 15-minute show was directed by Italian-Canadian film director Floria Sigismondi at the Savoy Club, the London hotel where founder Guccio Gucci got started as an elevator operator and found inspiration to return home to Florence and open his own leather goods shop.

“Gucci was born under some kind of constellation because the power it holds is nearly inexplicable,’’ Michele told a video press conference. With this collection, Michele clearly opened the locks of history, “to find a deeply personal vision of the mythology that surrounds the brand.”

The first look was a play on Tom Ford’s 1996 red velvet suit, with a leather harness over a powder blue shirt with Lil Pump’s song “Gucci Gang” playing in the background.

Editor Mario Abad wrote on Twitter: “Kudos to Alessandro for bringing back this Tom Ford for Gucci moment”

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The soundtracks were chosen by Michele himself and mixed by Lawrence Rothman, containing a choice of tunes including the word ‘Gucci’, “speaking to the staying power of the Maison and how profusely it contributed to the vocabulary of pop culture.” said an Instagram post.

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Other looks comprised of septum piercings, a live chinchilla as an embellishment, and bleeding heart totes which is something Gucci has never done before.

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