Marni’s artsy quirk is rooted in the practice of its design studio—a sort of workshop where everything is done by hand, from the creation of garments, which are called “objects” and whose volumes are intended as couture-ish soft sculptures, to the one-of-a-kind graphics so inherent to their eclectic visuals. “It’s a continuous, obsessive manual activation,” said Francesco Risso at a showroom appointment. “Every decoration or exploration of shapes is done by our team. We’ve got painters that can go from Renaissance reproductions to the craziest interpretations of modernist references. Our m.o. goes way beyond just making clothes.”
Risso has taken Marni on tour across the globe, in a series of collections that have alternated between the creative ebullience of shows and the slightly calmer pace of seasonal presentations. While the spring 2024 show held in Paris in September brought the “exuberance of the hand” to a performative peak, resort, which is dropping in stores now under the name Volume One, is a sort of balancing act between pragmatic “objects” that Marni-fy the everyday and more expressive capriccios. “Disciplined chaos” is how Risso often refers to the approach.
The collection encompasses a variety of volumes, shapes, and decorations—from concise daywear staples to painterly specimens, where the Marni triad of stripes, florals, and checks is juxtaposed and mismatched in imaginative mashups, tweaking the lineup’s workwear/sporty undercurrent. For both genders, suits, shells, trench coats, peacoats, and anoraks sit alongside expansive cocoon and balloon shapes and slimmer tailored or A-line silhouettes.
Risso said that Marni has always been about the idea of uniforms, playing around a certain utilitarian feel subverted by spirited nonconformity. To emphasize this notion, the collection was tied together by the use of a variety of cotton textures, from crisp poplin to robust canvas. “We had a true cotton obsession,“ he joked. Together with wit and whimsy, obsession seems to be a vital component to making the Marni machine run.