Carreau du Temple
Located north of the charming Le Marais district, the Carreau du Temple is a beautiful iron and glass building from 1863, which used to function as a market and is currently being restored… According to many Parisians, it is the gastronomic heart of Le Marais.
An ovation welcomes Pierpaolo Piccioli at the end of a fashion show for a collection that redefines Valentino’s codes to lead them to interpret the signs of everyday life. And it brings together items from Valentino Archive with those of a shared wardrobe between women and men
“Things have happened that you need to be aware of”, other than returning to the first, “I don’t think that going back to the past because it reassures us is a gesture that is needed to live today”: Pierpaolo Piccioli has a very precise idea of what he must to do with his Valentino and with the spring summer 2022 collection he writes his program. He does it with clothes, Piccioli, because «I like not to add words to what I do. I believe that the image has a very strong power: if the idea of equality that guides my fashion appears very present on the catwalk, it is useless to add the words because the image speaks for itself. This is what makes the message I want to give become radical ”.
Being radical, cultural power today more than ever necessary to use, means reversing the sense of fashion up side down, it means unhinging habits, abolishing certainties, canceling privileges, squinting the visual focus and adopting the oblique gaze of creativity. This is the thought that revolutionizes the existing, makes it alien to the sense of the uncritical acceptance of the existing and of normalization and brings it into the territory that Theodor Adorno called “radical critique of society”: in this case, a fashion designer can Pierpaolo Piccioli, to make Valentino the exponent of the theory that, paraphrasing the great German philosopher, would say “it is not fashion that must become popular but the people that must become fashionable”? Fashionable, anything is possible! Anything can happen around meters of fabrics and threads and embroidery and cuts to scissors and sewing machines: there is a world that is formed in an atelier, a world that is invented, a world that demands attention and dispenses imaginations. «I want to give an idea of beauty to the times that I am witnessing with my work. Beauty, however, is not made of perfection but of life: the road teaches a lot in this because it interprets the signs and makes them live in everyday life »says Piccioli.
What was experienced as an elitist is compromised with everyday life (the street) because it lives on the culture that feeds it today. «Bringing Valentino on the street means infusing the brand with today’s life, not doing a street style, it means moving from a concept of lifestyle to one of community. And that is to share values rather than the surface “says Piccioli in the salons of the Paris office in place Vendȏme to explain a collection that has a real, great mission: to bring a brand that was born in haute couture, and therefore in elite culture, to welcoming freedom, diversity, “giving value to the very fact that we are different” points out the designer. It is an enormous job, an overturning that Piccioli has actually been carrying out for some years with the process of Re-signification, that is, giving different values to Valentino’s codes,
One has to shake the wrists from the difficulty of the enterprise, but with its persuasive capacity, fashion can succeed where other more “cultured” creatives have not managed to re-signify their values (it should be remembered, for example, that Adorno he wanted a musical people and not popular music, but symphonic music is still destined for elitist use). Although he is not lacking in audacity, Piccioli is also lucky because he has in his hands a brand that has a very strong “popular” emotional experience through which re-signification can open itself to unexpected results. One of which can certainly be produced by the Valentino Archive project, eight garments from past years re-edited but not copied. Piccioli says, “I wanted to re-edit them because they in turn represent ruptures and changes in society, but aesthetics pass through identity and therefore if worn by different people the same garments become something else ». And in fact, the 1968 dress that a photo tells us worn by Marisa Berenson is not the same while on the catwalk it is combined with a pair of amphibious shoes, the shirt with the black and white print with the Valentino logo is not the same. Lisa Stoppi wore it in 1970 and today she wears the bust of a boy and which serves to underline the value of a shared wardrobe between women and men. Neither is the zebra-striped coat from 1967 worn by Veruschka in a photo of an advertising campaign of the time (the same that, like other photos, has now become the internal label of the garment). Everything appears different because “beauty is made of humanity” and today fashion has to tell the humanity that questions itself about its own existence,
In reality, Piccioli has not changed his working method, but it is as if his speech and his vision today tackle the issues with greater radicalism. It can also be seen in the rest of the collection that develops around the idea of a shared wardrobe between women and men. Washed taffetas form shirt and shorts combined with a faille jacket preceding pleated hoods, overcoats and shirts with large collars that are tied with a bow worn with bermuda shorts and combat boots, ostrich feathers that are implanted on anorak and bermuda shorts and talleur pants they have the same proportions, the same cuts, the same colors as the men’s suits, so much so that the shirt becomes an embroidered dress.
“I would like to offer everyone the opportunity to dress Valentino without excluding those who do not recognize themselves in an ideal model”: this is the radicalism that Piccioli makes a poetic and practical, noble and common use and that in this fashion show held at the Carreau du Temple and that involves the streets of the Marais that surround it demonstrates that “it is personal identity that creates aesthetics and evolves it by fragmenting it” as Piccioli likes to finish the explanation of a collection that speaks for itself (yes, what he says is true start, pictures explain better than words).