INFO

“The arrival of Maria Grazia Chiuri at Dior seems to add another chapter to the saga that is the recent fashion system. A time of unexpected departures and surprise arrivals, which has been defined by major figures as ‘a mess’. How do you view the position of the Italian designer, who has abandoned her role at Valentino, leaving behind PierPaolo Piccioli, and what do you think of this current time in fashion? What opportunities can this ‘confusion’ create and where is it leading to?”

THE QUESTION

Riccardo Vannetti, Pitti Tutorship Director

 
“I may be an incurable dreamer, but I see this migration to Paris as great opportunity both for Maria Grazia Chiuri, as well as for Pierpaolo Piccioli. I have been a fan of theirs for a long time and I am absolutely convinced that they can both do very well in their respective fashion houses.
Maria Grazia Chiuri is the first woman, Italian (which I underline), to design for Dior. Her  romanticism and great passion may give the brand a new flow of emotions to be worn. She knows the market well, and she knows her job well too: this combination can only help her ascent.
PierPaolo Piccioli is a very strong designer both in menswear, as well as in women’s collections. He is punctual, precise and determined. He has an incredible vision which he succeeds in expressing through his creations. He will be an excellent leader and alone will give Valentino a highly personal and intimate breath of fresh air .
As I said, I cannot but support two genuine Italian talents who have shown right through their careers that they are highly knowledgeable and dedicated to what they do, without forgetting their flair, imagination and farsightedness. They deserve attention.
Where is this confusion leading?
To a real generational change, to something new for sure and when changes are under way, even if there is a “mess”, they are something exciting and to be watched very closely.” 
 

Angelo Flaccavento, freelance critic


"Undoubtedly, the moment we are witnessing is confused and chaotic. It is marked by sudden departures, unexpected splits, strange business and creative choices  - see Brioni. I think that a decision such as the one made by Maria Grazia Chiuri cannot be judged from the outside, as one taken lightly. Knowing her, and knowing her enthusiasm for her work, I am certain it was a well thought out decision. Personally, I am excited: her female and decorative perspective, not to mention her ability to create desirable accessories, will give new life to Dior. I am also excited for Valentino, where a shakeup to break the now codified formula has been needed for some time. PierPaolo Piccioli has an acute sense of style and a broad vision, and I am curious to see how he will develop that in his new role as a soloist. I expect a more rarefied Valentino, maybe, always elegant and full of grace. A couple that splits causes a stir, after eighteen years of collaboration. But change is the essence of fashion and of progress in general: to fear it is silly."

Sofia Celeste, contributor to WWD

 

“It is a pity that such a strong duo have split up. PierPaolo Piccioli and Maria Chiara Chiuri really beat the odds by taking a fashion house that wasn’t theirs and making it into something of their own and with a distinctive style. They succeeded in capturing fashion addicts all over Europe and even on the red carpets of New York and Hollywood. We have never seen Valentino’s label decline or vanish into oblivion like many might have imaged when he retired.
As regards the state of fashion – there are a lot of inconsistencies. Brands are led by the stock exchange, by CEOs and private economic funds, whose main concerns are increasing profits. We have seen this musical chairs play out among designers for a long time now – and frankly today’s designers no longer have the chance to make their mark on a fashion house. From the Sixties to the Nineties, designers really had the chance to rise to the role of artists – and owning a piece that Yves Saint Laurent created for Dior or for his own label is like owning a Klimt or a Mondrian. Younger designers who are hired today by the big fashion brands don’t hang around long enough to ever enjoy this kind of status.”