After Giorgio Armani’s Emporio show at the Via Bergognone theater this afternoon, his latest opening at his Armani/Silos gallery across the road: Guy Bourdin: Storyteller. Rich, saturated colors — magenta, blue, teal, purple and turquoise, which are especially effective when mixed in Memphis-style panels — intersect with this predominantly monochrome collection, partly because of the It was Bourdin’s searing palette.
Armani also said the collection was influenced by the notion of Elizabethan theatrical costume as protagonist, emphasizing character. Looped black ribbon necklines — reimagined with ruffles — were referenced in shimmering blue and green velvet suits as well as ruffled collars and pink silk shirts with bibs. Bowler hats and sometimes hyperactive models also suggested a silent expression of fashion.
The characters Armani portrays in his garments are firmly drawn from his own heritage. The starting point was soft tailoring, his typical touchstone: jackets and coats and vests in a variety of cuts and fabrics, mostly in shades of gray, paired with shorts, skirts and trousers tucked into boots like breeches. Jackets and knee-length flared skirts are crafted in broken silk jacquard with a purple menswear graphic that marks the color shift. Tufted collarless jackets featured the same checks we just saw on jacquard, paired with more pronounced breeches-derived trousers. This was followed by tuxedo black daywear, often with a sportswear influence, then velvet suiting, a central color section of an intarsia faux fur herringbone jacket, and a silk jacquard shirt that shimmered over technical organza trousers.
Heading into the evening, Armani featured sequin embellishments in looks, including two double-belted halter-neck tops paired with sequined trousers, and a series of knee-length dresses in the same jacquard fabric as earlier. A beaming model beamed in a Chaplin-inspired hat and a full-length version of the skirt, which was all black with twisted straps. It marked the show’s final curtain call: the director came out and took a bow.