ON THE WAY TO SHANGHAI
A show devoted to the Red Carpet, its thousands of lights and its seduction. This is Curiel Haute Couture
2018 Capsule. A singular red carpet, however, which catalyses and brings to life tangible and riveting iconic evocations and aesthetics translated from the magic worlds of the opera and the big screen. A game of reflexes and suggestions coming from multiple imaginations, a mosaic of cultural and artistic shards and fragrances that are transformed, that fragment and then redesign a map of beauty and emotion.
A path is developed along a single, exquisitely Italian thread, inspired in particular by legendary lyric roles and the epic works of great singers, as well as by the timeless mystery of the foyer and the purples and the gold of La Scala in Milan, the greatest opera house in the world. A creative exercise that caresses virtuosity, the fruit of one-of-a-kind sartorial knowledge cultivated over three successive generations and of iconic and iridescent taste, composed of 25 unique styles, each one hinged on a precise and independent figure or inspiration, each one poetically devoted to a peculiar and fascinating cosmos.
Raffaella Curiel chooses, perhaps for the first time, to depart from a single theme, from one pictorial, historical, architectural or literary leit motif. There is new desire for freedom, hers, a wager that is visible like a semantic texture that explores fervid, contiguous and different lands. The collection will be presented on the runway in Shanghai next November 10th, to mark the opening of the brand’s flagship store in the Chinese metropolis and will quite simply be called “Red Carpet” Curiel 2018, deliberately avoiding seasonal dating.
Raffaella Curiel tells her collection’s story defining it as new achievement, a sort of calling to order in respect to the confusing daily fashion planet, to the excess and dress to impress that is reflected in the enormous contradictions and rising chaos of our society. The decor, the ornamental score is worn thin, precious is placed in counterpoint to vocationally linear structures and forms that have uniform backgrounds and are geometric, purist and heavily decorated. A slightly 60s graphic flair, dry and condensed, minimalism combined with baroque pervades the collection. Extraordinary techniques are alternated with precious fabrics, golden plissé fans and minute tonal embroidery.
The classic little black dress of the Milanese Maison, the “Curiellino” a versatile passe-partout, comes to life thanks to dynamic continuous fringes that in reality are sophisticated and charming crêpe tubular shapes. An all-black short evening tunic is composed of long floating feathers. More than fourteen layers of point d’esprit tulle in imperceptibly different nuances, positioned one upon the other, were required to achieve the ideal shade of grey to match the distilled and indefinable colour of the coat completing the ensemble.
The golden age of bel canto returns in a dress and cape ensemble made of ice dentelle laced with moving, fleeting, sedate gold and old silver thread and embroidery. The garments will be worn by the soprano Lucia Aliberti, the star of a recital featuring emblematic arias, at the opening in Shanghai. The Renaissance is visible in other parts of the collection, such as the Moorish-like, energetically vibrant, architecturally designed, electric blue mohair coat. The wedding dress in pearl Mikado with retro shirt collar is almost perfect in its prim nun’s habit style. Only an unexpected cascade of flounces in delicate candid 1870s Brussels lace on the back contravenes the desire for the abstract and minimalism that distinguishes it.
The flamboyant bustling, crinoline evening dress illustrates Italian Opera Theatres boxes on scarlet velvet. Depicted in an almost Fornasettian and gravé style they are alternated with opulent, gold embroidered, overhanging stripes. Thanks to the hands of incredible Italian needle workers, a series of fairy-like, polychrome birds, positioned between golden neo-gothic cages and inspired by 18th Century chinoiserie, comes to life on black faille.
An aspiration to the imaginary, to the surreal that opens further dimensions, that throws us open to the passages of invention. However, the pieces of this incredible kaleidoscope do not end here. Looking closely they could carry on infinitely, generating a constellation of cross-references, of emotions and of magnificent diversions. Raffaella Curiel reveals her mantra: “I am not interested in being a fashion designer - she affirms - but rather the stylistic love I have gifted to women”.
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