Keanan Duffty has joined the Polimoda fashion institute in Florence as mentor for the master’s program in fashion styling, effective in April.
Duffty will continue to be based in New York but will make six trips to Polimoda throughout the year to provide advice and educational guidance to students.
The dean of Polimoda, Danilo Venturi, invited Duffty to join the faculty after the designer gave a guest presentation at the opening of the 2017 Polimoda Rendez-Vous lecture program during the Pitti Uomo show in January. Duffty, along with Sex Pistols founder and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Glen Matlock, discussed the intersection of fashion and music and its effect on modern culture, with more than 100 students in attendance. The lecture was followed by two days of intensive workshops with Duffty, for graduate and undergraduate students.
“The global fashion business is currently going through a major paradigm shift,” Duffty said. “I believe it is important for emerging talent to receive guidance from experienced academics and industry professionals in order to navigate that change. I look forward to being a mentor to Polimoda’s very talented design, marketing and fashion business students, bringing my passion for new ideas and a fresh business approach into the classroom thereby preparing the next wave of talent for success in the future.”
Duffty had served most recently as senior design director for the John Varvatos Star USA line. The Britain-born Duffty graduated from Central Saint Martins in London with a bachelor of arts degree in fashion and is a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America. He established his own fashion label in 1999 and in 2007, he collaborated with David Bowie to create a men’s fashion collection for Target that was inspired by the musician. He has worked as a design director and guest designer with Aveda, Ben Sherman, Dr. Martens, Gola, Gwen Stefani’s L.A.M.B., Reebok and Moods of Norway. From 2012 to 2015, he was senior director of fashion merchandising at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
Polimoda is considered among the best fashion schools in the world, offering students experience in Italian design and production with an international vision. Around 70 percent of its students come from countries outside Italy.