The world as a stage, on which each individual represents himself, driven by passions, feelings, and by emotions that are infinite shades of living and being there. In the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli explore the idea of theatrum mundi for the Valentino Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2016-17 Collection. From the Elizabethan playwright they don’t grasp the stories, the plot or the protagonists, but the capacity of penetrating into the human spirit and depicting it with vivid accuracy in all its aspects and implications. It is the idea of the character as a personality, of the role as a persona that fascinates and triggers the Creative Directors, with the awareness that no individual is guided by one emotion only, but on the other hand unites them all, expressing them in different moments, or simultaneously.

The individual’s interior multiplicity and complexity is the red thread that crosses a collection that is conceived as a portrait gallery, where every dress summarizes an impulse of the soul, even the most difficult to express, and all together convey the totality of man. The austere and moderate tone, the choice of dense colors, precious and nocturnal, upon which an opulent and deep black prevails, the intentional subtraction of the gleaming and theatrical aspects of Couture, confer to the creations presence and power and a masculine grace that is a repercussion of the Shakespearian world that has an intimately and highly masculine spirit. The figurative verve appears on white cotton shirts and on tulle or cotton ruffles that recur as a sign and accent, conferring solemnity to the succession of the dresses. The austere silhouette is drawn by slim trousers worn with petite masculine jackets, by the elongated and liquid dresses, by the boule shapes that release an archetypal grace, by the solemn and transcendent cloaks that underline the regal stride. Lushness is a submerged play of weaving that must be grasped on a closer look: on dark and sumptuous brocades, on taffetas scattered by tiny tie designs that bring together once again masculine and feminine, on the organza’s which are encrusted with poetic embroideries. Contrasts on the booties with thick soles, that are characterized by touches of Elizabethan punk and jewelry assembled on leather strings, created by Alessandro Gaggio.

Transforming the secret inner being in apparel, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli celebrate the representative power of fashion and the exciting and emotional alchemy of the work of the Atelier


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