THE AL­CHEMIST OF HAP­PI­NESS

Esquire (Malaysia) - - MACHINERY - Styling and words by ian l oh Pho­tog­ra­phy by zhonglin Art di­rec­tion by rebecca chew

Alessandro Michele’s first amal­ga­mated show for the men’s and women’s col­lec­tions (119 looks!) is “an an­drog­y­nous, hy­brid, spu­ri­ous re­volt that saps the foun­da­tions of the deadly rigid­ity of di­choto­mous thought,” to quote from Gucci’s ab­struse show notes. To put it in lay­man’s terms, with a lit­tle help from the thesaurus: in the world of Gucci, any­thing can hap­pen, and of­ten does. So, when the FW’17 cam­paign rolled out last month, there were ro­bots, aliens, di­nosaurs, earth­lings and hu­manoids. In a col­lec­tion where past, present and fu­ture collide, it re­ally was a case of throw­ing out the rule­book.

“You don’t have to think any­more if it’s fash­ion or not. Just do some­thing that be­longs to you. And what be­longs to me is that I can pick up dif­fer­ent things and let them talk, like the al­chemist. You take things that ap­par­ently have no voice—very trashy stuff from LA, odd things from Eng­land, Ital­ian aes­thet­ics, what young guys and girls love—and af­ter, they be­come gold,” Michele told Tim Blanks dur­ing an in­ter­view with The Busi­ness of Fash­ion.

As ex­pected, there are mil­lions of things go­ing on with Michele’s more is more is more ap­proach: over­sized Ori­en­tal-in­spired jacquard coats, cut-off AC/DC T-shirts, long coats with Coco Capitán’s apho­risms on the lin­ing, flo­ral-print track­suits, bat mo­tif jumpers, quirky glasses, over-the-top rings, em­bel­lished waist bags, and the list goes on. At times, it can be over­whelm­ing, but it is when you strip each out­fit down to its in­di­vid­ual parts that Michele’s glo­ri­ous cre­ativ­ity re­ally shines through.

It’s per­haps only in times like these we can all ap­pre­ci­ate an al­chemist like Michele who, with his magic touch, turns clothes into gold and in­fects peo­ple all over the world with a de­sire to wear them. And who says you can’t buy hap­pi­ness?

all by Gucci. Tur­ban and tank top, stylist’s own.

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