It’s fair to say that Gucci had an L.A. moment last week.
Since touching down in the city last Monday, creative director Frida Giannini and chief executive officer Patrizio di Marco christened their newly renovated Rodeo Drive flagship with a party Thursday, then presented the fourth iteration of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Art + Film Gala on Saturday. It was, as international partygoers have come to expect, another starry night, with regulars such as Kate Hudson, Amy Adams, Kate Beckinsale and Evan Rachel Wood in attendance to support co-chairs Eva Chow and Leonardo DiCaprio and honorees Barbara Kruger and Quentin Tarantino. This year, there were also Kering chief François-Henri Pinault and wife Salma Hayek, Jennifer Lopez, James Franco, Jamie Foxx, Selena Gomez and Kimye in attendance, plus artists Catherine Opie, Piero Golia and John Baldessari.
“LACMA is probably the most important event we do, the most visible, in a sense, because what happens on Saturday is basically to have the whole Hollywood world convene to celebrate artists,” said di Marco Wednesday, seated on a brown leather chair in the new men’s made-to-measure salon on the third floor of the Beverly Hills store.
Giannini, speaking to WWD from her own perch, a brown velvet sofa, in the women’s made-to-measure salon, was still having a hard time adjusting to the sunny surroundings. “This morning I was having a meeting downstairs and there was a group of Japanese girls, and I said ‘OK, those are the first clients I’m meeting in L.A. and they’re Japanese and I just came from Japan….I want to see some American people at this point, you know?’”
That said, a range of Giannini’s work was on display on Saturday, from a custom version of the spring finale dress on Charlotte Casiraghi to the nude chiffon Première creation on Hudson, and a few Gucci tuxedos on Alex Pettyfer, Franco et al.
“I’m clad in a quite soft and very stroke-able Gucci,” said Eddie Redmayne of his cashmere tuxedo. “It’s quite a cold night here, so I’m getting warmed up. I also find it’s quite good armor, like when you go to these red carpets which I find quite intimidating, when you have a good suit on you feel more armed.”
LACMA newbie Gomez, wearing one of her signature looks (long, plunging, semisheer etc.), didn’t know what to expect when she turned up with date Cara Delevingne. “Obviously I can tell it’s a major event — and I was worried I was going to be overdressed at one point! I was like, ‘Maybe I should go with a shorter dress.’” Gomez said. “That’s what she said,” cracked Delevingne.
When asked what he was doing at the event, Ryan Seacrest replied, “I’m on the board here. I’m workin’. I’m just a student [of art]; I’m learning and having a good time exploring. I have an office across the street [at E] and I drive by every single day. Every once in a while I drop in here to escape from reality and just walk around.”
Lapo Elkann arrived, in a bright-green tux from his Lapo’s Wardrobe for Gucci capsule collection, walking with the help of two crutches to support a sizable cast on one leg. “I had an accident on a scooter and I have three broken ribs and a broken tibia. It’s two months-and-a-half more and it’s part of life,” he said of the cast. “I’m lucky I’m not in a wheelchair, which I had to use for one month, so I thank God that [it] wasn’t more.”
After dinner, the awards were doled out to Kruger (presented by LACMA director Michael Govan) and Tarantino (presented by Tim Roth), the crowd got to take it back a few decades with a performance by Culture Club. After “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” and “Karma Chameleon,” Boy George and co. dedicated a cover of “Son of a Preacher Man” to Tarantino and sang a catchy new tune called “More Than Silence.”
After that, most of the celebs convened at Michael and Eva Chow’s Beverly Hills manse for more music — Mr. Chow busted some impressive moves on the dance floor while Christian Louboutin shook it on the sidelines, and Kirsten Dunst and boyfriend Garrett Hedlund cuddled on a couch by the fireplace. In one corner, DiCaprio was barely recognizable beneath a bushy beard as he chatted to Foxx. Hayek was busy piling her plate at the buffet. “Excuse me, do you know what kind of burger this is?” she asked two guests standing on the other side of the table. “I know you are guests, but I’m so hungry I need to know now.”
Sandwiched between Hayek and her husband was the Chows’ new neighbor Liberty Ross, who grew antsy when the bar line slowed after a server left to fetch more Champagne. “You know what? I’m going back to the front door because they were serving full drinks on trays right as you walked in.”