CLEAN SLATE: Kris Van Assche may be sitting out this men’s season as he settles into his new role as artistic director of Berluti, but he hints at the house’s new direction with his first advertising campaign, featuring a brand-new visual identity.
Shot by Jamie Hawkesworth and styled by Mauricio Nardi, the black-and-white images will be plastered across Paris on Monday, just as buyers and editors arrive in town for men’s fashion week, which is set to feature the debut shows of Kim Jones at Dior Homme and Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton.
The campaign features three nude models posing with variations of Berluti’s classic Alessandro oxford shoes, made from a single piece of patinated Venezia leather or alligator hide. Like a blank canvas, the campaign is designed to symbolize the reset of the brand following Van Assche’s arrival in April, succeeding Haider Ackermann.
The Belgian designer will show his first collection for Berluti in January as head of shoes, leather goods, ready-to-wear and accessories collections at the brand. He joined the house from Dior Homme, where he spent 11 years at the helm.
In the meantime, he has enlisted graphic design duo M/M Paris to create a logo based on the letters carved into a wooden shoe tree dating back to 1895, the year founder Alessandro Berluti established himself as a shoemaker. The logo’s stylized font is designed to echo the slight erosion of the letters’ outlines over time.
“For this first campaign, I wanted to create an image rooted in the maison’s origins and emboss it with my vision,” Van Assche said in a statement. “See you in January.”
Antoine Arnault, chief executive officer of Berluti, added: “This campaign was thought of and art-directed by Kris. I relate to it because it speaks of who we are while holding a promise of more to come.”