Alessandro Michele only took the creative lead at Gucci in January — just weeks after former director Frida Giannini was unceremoniously fired as head designer — but his impact on the label's mood and aesthetic is already felt, and his vision is becoming more clear.
Faced with continually declining revenue and waning relevancy within the luxury market, the Kering-owned brand tasked Michele with making a change. The overhaul began with his fall 2015 collections for men and women. Both were androgynous, romantic, offbeat and, perhaps most importantly, unlike anything we'd seen from Gucci in decades.
The makeover continues with the label's pre-fall 2015 campaign — the first under Michele's creative direction — released on Facebook Tuesday. Shot by Glen Luchford and styled by Joe McKenna, it's a far cry from the Gucci ads we're used to, which usually feature a big-name model up close and personal with the collection's goods in high-gloss images shot by Mert and Marcus. For pre-fall, models Alexandra Elisabeth and Julia Hafstrom are captured in a suggestive situation: admiring a half-dressed man while lounging on a sofa.
While Gucci has become known for its sexy wares — especially during the Tom Ford era — this campaign is seductive in a much less in-your-face way. Because the images read more like an editorial than a straight-up advertisement, there's also a slightly mysterious vibe that leads consumers to wonder about the story behind them. (Perhaps it's just me, but my mind immediately went to Prada ads from decades past, and to Fiona Apple's mid-'90s clip for "Criminal.")
This is just a taste of Gucci's new direction, and our interest has definitely been piqued.