Men’s – Luca Guadagnino and Gardening. Fendi SS20

When Luca Guadagnino does something, I just can’t ignore it. The A Bigger Splash, Call Me By Your Name and Suspiria director got invited by Silvia Venturini Fendi to be the guest artist behind Fendi’s spring-summer 2020 collection for men. Fendi and Luca have a long-time relationship: the brand notched associate producer credits on I Am Love, for example, and the two worked on a short film for the label. Guadagnino loves fashion and puts focus on it in his films (remember those Dior by Raf Simons clothes Tilda Swinton wore in A Bigger Splash?). So his vision for the Fendi show felt as if he put his signature, sun-drenched filter on it. Presented  in the gorgeous garden of Milan’s Villa Reale, the collection was a nod to gardening and being close to nature. The gardening looks are too pretty to work in, but still, you can fantasize about wearing one of those outfits to check on your carrots: olive-green outerwear with detachable pockets and delightful short-sleeved overall with suede patches, accompanied by clipping baskets, watering cans, and garderning gloves (all with barely visible, Fendi logo). There was a utility vest in botanical-print-organza-clad strips of shearling teamed with a multi-compartment tool bag in leather. Luca and Silvia also came up with soft tailoring with split-hemmed pants arranged around floral-print ties, swimwear teamed with slashed cut-out knits and washed workman’s denim that came sometimes leather-patched. Brilliant.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Suspiria. Undercover AW19

When I saw Undercover‘s autumn-winter 2019 collection, I was literally like: “OMG. It’s an ode to Suspiria. OMG!”. Yes. Jun Takahashi really did a collection that’s in majority all about Luca Guadagnino’s remake of Dario Argento’s cult horror, Suspiria. First, you’ve got to know I’m a mega-fan of Luca and all his films. But his Suspiria transported me to a completely different world. So I was really impressed that somebody in fashion finally went crazy for this film and did a proper collection based on it. The mood of 1970’s, Cold War-era Berlin and a world-renowned dance company controlled by powerful, elusive, sadomasochistic witches… it’s such a good source of inspiration. Not only the collection’s colour palette was completely inspired with the film. Takahashi wanted to use the film stills for prints (Guadagnino gave his permission for this – he’s a film director with an incredible sensibility for fashion) and here we are with a line-up of bomber jackets, hoodies, dresses and skirts that picture some of the most standout moments from the remake. Tilda Swinton – who played three roles in the film – and her character of Madame Blanc in a floor-sweeping, red dress appeared in two ways: as a literal print, and as skirt-pant hybrid in the same colour. I think no other designer can make a collection look so good, using just one reference and focusing so much on it. The theme doesn’t feel tired or invasive. It’s for fans, but not only – I bet any Undercover client will rush for the collection’s garments, without even watching Suspiria. You haven’t? Please do!

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

A Bigger Splash

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We are all OBSCENE!

I’ve been waiting for A Bigger Splash since last September, and just yesterday I had a chance to see it in the cinema. But the waiting was honestly worth it, as I can openly say that I’m obsessed with it even more than I were few months ago. Luca Guadagnino‘s sultry, Italian sun-bathed thriller, starring Tilda Swinton, Dakota Johnson, Ralph FiennesMatthias Schoenaerts and Lily McMenamy, is a masterpiece. Visually, musically, artistically.

On an idyllic island of Pantelleria, Marianne Lane, a rock-star (played by the one and only Swinton), cures herself from a temporary voice loss and is all in sensual, compassionate relationship with Paul (Schoenaerts). Lying naked on the off-beat beach all day, the couple’s fantasy escape is interrupted by a spontanous visit of chaotic, impulsive Harry (played by Fiennes), Marianne’s music producer and old, drug-fuelled love. He arrives to the island with a shocking surprise: his “newly-discovered” daughter, Penelope (Dakota Johnson), who is a reflection of a melancholic lolita-teenager. The atmosphere gets stinking hot, as jealousy, untamed love and temperamental desire start to ooze in the relations between these equally vivid characters. Dancing to Rolling Stone’s Emotional Rescue, Harry is getting on everybody’s nerves, simultaneously inducing Marianne to fall in love with him, again. On the other side of the terracotta tiled pool, we’ve got Paul, a level-headed, loyal lover to Lane; but then, there is Penelope, whose coquettish behaviour and nasty attitude towards the others will make everything even more complicated…

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A Bigger Splash is a remake of French thriller La Piscine, which is iconic due to star power of Alain Delon, Romy Schneider and Jane Birkin – however, the plot has many reinterpreted, unpredictable twists. As Guadignino believes that fashion plays a major role in his films (!), the frivolous dresses, alluring skirts and sequined jumpsuits a la Ziggy Stardust, designed by Raf Simons during his tenure at Dior, fulfill the meaningful body language of Marianne. Also, the soundtrack of A Bigger Splash was curated in the dynamic, sexy rhyme of this (already) cult film – from rock’n’roll Nevada Wild tracks to operatic Popol Vuh, the play with sound is mind-blowing in here, too.

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Lily McMenamy in "A Bigger Splash"

I rarely (almost never) write about films on my blog – but I just couldn’t hold back from sharing my excitement with Luca’s film. Although it tells about pain and misunderstanding, obscenity and looking into the past, it’s an aesthetically beautiful nod to gestures, touch, sense and unconventional love. Should I even recommend it? Go for it, without consideration.

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Photographs above: Giulio Ghirardi examines the exquisite costumes and props, which helped bulid the elusive seductiveness of A Bigger Splash.