Versace: the storytelling of Italian fashion history

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Corrado Manenti
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Gianni Versace's message resonates to this day:  He who falls in love with the Medusa has no chance! . The aim from the start was to leave anyone who admired his shop windows or his clothes petrified, so much so that there is no turning back

As well as a complete revolution in fashion, the Versace brand has left an indelible mark on the history of Italian fashion leaving questions unanswered: would Gianni sell the company?

 

Versace the genius. 

- Versace: the storytelling of Italian fashion history - 1

The 15 July 1997 Two gunshots ended the life of Gianni Versace, leaving an unbridgeable gap in the fashion industry. Dead at 51 was at the height of success and initiatives.

Born and raised in Calabria, immersed in Roman and Greek arts, Gianni worked from an early age in the family tailor's shop with his mother.  The beauty of Roman baths and Greek monuments influenced his imagination from the very beginning.

It is recognisable that his collections make use of Etruscan symbolism, elements of ancient Greece and Italian Baroque, which merge with punk music, street art and seemingly irreconcilable materials such as plastic and metal: an unrefined style for the times (1975), and that was what Gianni wanted. His goal was never to be forgotten, reliving the primordial emotions in all the collections, catwalk after catwalk.


Donatella Versace, the muse heir to the empire

- Versace: the storytelling of Italian fashion history - 2

Donatella represents the first muse of the brand and his heir. In her hands she will have to hold the reins of a company and be the spokesperson of a philosophy for a great challenge: that of following the path of a pioneer without going astray.

At a time when the designer is no longer just an artist but also an entrepreneur, accountant and marketer in society, it is necessary to design a different scheme. Donatella and Santo Versace, the first to believe in Gianni, rolled up their sleeves and for years ran the whole company, with the necessary help from various managers.

Among them Giancarlo Di Risio, driver of the Versace company from 2004 to 2009, and Gian Giacomo Ferraris, manager of the entry of the Blackstone fund (a manoeuvre that succeeded in restoring the business) to Jonathan Ackroid.

Gianni, as always, saw long, because he will become precisely Donatella the new Versace soul. Increasingly creative, increasingly innovative, instead of feeling the weight of such a strong legacy, it becomes stronger, acquiring more and more magic touch, vision and taste.

 

The sale to Michael Kors

- Versace: the storytelling of Italian fashion history - 3

It is neither the first nor the last Italian company to be incorporated into the hands of a foreign giant. Sale does not mean endIt is a revolution, a new challenge, with the resilience of all times, that which runs in the voracious blood of the Versace brand.

Fashion remains and Donatella will still be present at her maison. At the event, she declared: ?Santo, Allegra and I we recognise that the next phase will allow Versace to reach its full potentialHe goes on to say: "My family believes that being part of this group is essential for the long-term success of Versace? 

The 24 September 2018 Michael Kors Holdings announced the definitive agreement for the acquisition of all the shares of the Gianni Versace SpA, for EUR 1.83 billion.

The group will be called Capri Holding Limited, but beware, as Donatella reminded us some time ago on the page's Instagram profile, this name is pronounced Versace..

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