MILAN — “The big Italian and international trade shows have to [involve] the cities more and more,” said Raffaello Napoleone, chief executive officer of Pitti Uomo trade show’s organizer Pitti Immagine on Wednesday.
Napoleone presented the packed schedule of shows, presentations and special projects of the upcoming edition of the Florence-based men’s trade show, which runs June 12 -15. The comments were made because Pitti Uomo is set to be an event not only within the historic Fortezza da Basso location’s walls but throughout the whole city. “We’re really glad that the involvement [of Florence] in what we do in Fortezza da Basso is increasing,” said Napoleone.
On the inaugural day of the trade show, Gucci will unveil two new halls at the Gucci Garden Galleria exhibition space, housed inside the Gucci Garden, with a cocktail event. Opened during January’s edition and located inside the historic Palazzo della Mercanzia in Florence’s Piazza della Signoria, the space also hosts a restaurant curated by the three-Michelin-star chef Massimo Bottura and a store. For the occasion, the shop will showcase a limited-edition capsule collection featuring the illustrations of a new artist tapped by the fashion label for the first time, but whose name is yet to be disclosed.
As reported, Craig Green and Roberto Cavalli will be Pitti Uomo’s Menswear Guest Designer and Special Guest, respectively. The former will host a show on June 14 at the Giardino di Boboli venue, while the latter will relaunch men’s wear under the creative direction of Paul Surridge with a special event on June 13 held at the Certosa di Firenze monastery.
The same day, as part of Pitti’s “Designer Project,” Japanese designer Fumito Ganryu will unveil his new namesake brand at the Frittelli contemporary art gallery.
Also in the city, Moncler will officially launch the first of its Genius project’s collections, with an event with live music on June 13 that will celebrate the line created by Hiroshi Fujiwara.
On the retail front, Giorgio Armani and Ermanno Scervino will fete the opening of their respective Florentine stores during Pitti Uomo.
MCM will double its presence showcasing its spring 2019 Luft collection in Fortezza da Basso’s Sala dell’Orologio hall and hosting a show at the city’s Dogana venue on the second day.
Birkenstock will adopt the same approach with a presence both at the trade show and holding a show and party at the Giardino Torrigiani location.
The same venue will host a party for the relaunch of L’Uomo Vogue on June 12. Discontinued last year, Condé Nast’s glossy magazine will return to newsstands in a renovated format — including an English version — featuring five fashion stories lensed by female photographers.
This edition of the show will also mark the opening of Pitti Uomo to fast fashion, as COS will unveil its men’s wear capsule collection “Soma” through a special event in the city, which will be choreographed by Wayne McGregor.
In addition, Federico Curradi and Japanese label BED j.w. FORD will present their collections through an installation and fashion show, respectively, on June 14. The latter will also include a preview of a special project the label has realized for Adidas Original.
At the Stazione Leopolda venue, Herno will celebrate its 70th anniversary with the Library three-day event.
Meanwhile, the Fortezza da Basso location will be restyled in a POP version. In this particular case, POP stands for Pitti Optical Power, the theme organizers selected for the season. The venue will be covered in kaleidoscopic, optical patterns and a new common area, named POP Arena, will be implemented to house some of the events of the upcoming edition, including the celebrations for Lardini’s 40th anniversary.
Altogether, Pitti Uomo will showcase 1,240 brands, 561 of which will be international and around 250 will be new-entry names. The trade show is expected to draw 19,400 buyers and a total of 30,000 visitors.
Napoleone underscored that 100 to 120 buyers will be in attendance thanks to the investments that ICE — the country’s trade agency — has implemented to promote the fair internationally.
“We benefit from this public financing, which we hope will be confirmed by the new political administration, if not even enhanced. We appeal to the new government to continue what has been done so far,” said Napoleone. The executive also underscored that the financing will cover the remaining part of the year’s trade show and the events scheduled for January 2019.
In addition to the POP Arena, Fortezza da Basso will debut new features, including the I Go Out project dedicated to the outdoor style and showcasing 25 labels combining fashion with sustainability and well-being elements. A special lounge introducing to the area will host Reda Active’s high-performance textile, while at the nearby Polveriera location, Giacomo and Franco Loro Piana will present the urban offering of their label SEASE.
The Athlovers section, debuted in January, will be included in the wider Unconventional, focusing on contemporary and a-gender collections, in addition to ath-leisure.
As reported, in Fortezza’s Spazio Carra area, six Georgian designers — Aznauri, Situationist, Anuka Keburia, Gola Damian, Tatuna Nikolaishvili and Vaska — will present their collections as part of the program promoted by Fondazione Pitti Immagine Discovery in collaboration with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tbilisi.
In addition, the Arena Strozzi will host 17 Scandinavian labels as part of Pitti Immagine’s collaboration with Revolver Copenhagen, named Scandinavian Manifesto. The same venue will also house the Futuro Maschile sophisticated-sportswear section, where Band of Outsiders’ first Florentine presentation will take place on June 13.
Other key appointments at the fair include Ermenegildo Zegna presenting its beachwear collection; Paul & Shark showcasing a capsule collection developed with Nick Wooster; Iceberg debuting its new, street couture line Ice Play and Rossignol focusing on dynamic collections through the Mountain Mobility range and the Urban Mobility line, designed by Damir Doma, among others.