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Collections —Man / Prêt-à-Porter

Spring / Summer — 1998

Press Release

“If I had to define this collection, I would say that it exudes a conscious sense of freedom and a strong urge for virility. No hints of exaggeration or excess. All comes together through the eyes of the man who makes the distinctly Mediterranean, even North African codes, formulas and aesthetics his own. Who reads and explores the imprint with the somewhat irreverent and very Western intelligence of Paul Bowles. No winks at exoticism, at the Moroccan or Berber. And yet I enjoy underlining the word Mediterranean because it connotes a certain tenderness, sage simplicity, peacefulness. Reflecting a sense of civilization, a bent for civility… shunning the asphyxia of a sole past, a sole tribe, a sole culture… which paradoxically has the effect of a lack of culture… “

Gianfranco Ferré

There is an appropriate and natural sense of the BODY and its structure, yet contemporaneously an urge for freedom and a refusal of constriction that instinctively favour fuller shapes. Thus the lightweight jacket features firm support at the shoulders (marked by moderate padding), then falls softly around the pelvis. Trousers are wide-leg but – unlike the baggy variety – rest on the hips.

Moving beyond minimalism the pursuit of ELEMENTARINESS comes through in the particularity of the fabric. Thus materials such as organzine emerge in unprecedented forms for suits, T-shirts and jumpsuits. Similarly, use is made of gabardine and silk blends both iridescent and dullish. And of cotton chambrays reasserting various formulas of dressing. Formulas that refer to endless cultures and now belong to contemporary life’s endless new tribes: the collarless shirt, the workshirt – or longjacket – type duster, the superlight wool crêpe jacket-shirt with inside pocket and soft easy line.
The COMFORT principle is at the basis of a wardrobe that also includes shorts, shoes with buff and rubber soles, pullovers with hand-dyed-and-dirtied effects, shirts in washed duck. Even precious silk gets brushed in order to resemble chenille.

A rich array of Mediterranean COLORS, dense and dark (earth, wall, rock tones), line up with pale sand gray and dawn white hues, with washed-out early-morning sky blues.

Strong new elements in the world of DENIM: for shirts, the use of ultralight laquered chambray mixed with silk taffetà yarns, as well the presence of hemp Thanks to this pure, vegetable and particularly wearing-resistant material – which espresses the proper concept of ecology – Gianfranco Ferré could create jeans pants, blouses, blousons, washed and re-washed, so that the texture becomes smooth and “lived”.