Designer doesn’t want Italy’s renowned lead in the industry to wane
With so many iconic Italian fashion houses today struggling and looking into other development options like IPOs, selling to conglomerates or even royalty – Miuccia Prada speaks her mind about today’s market of Italian fashion.
While maintaining that Italy continues to be the best country in the world in terms of production, the designer cautioned against the dispersion of talent and brands. “With the sale of our luxury labels to foreigners, our entire system risks falling into second league,” said Prada, worried that companies and their workers could end up becoming mere contractors or manufacturers. “Because if our brands cross our borders, the credit, glamour, fame and decision making is in the hands of others, and we are abandoned, downgraded,” she remarked.
In fact, the designer believes that important creative talents have started to snub Italy and opt for Paris. “You can’t blame them,” she said.
Prada partly blamed the media, accusing the Italian press of not taking fashion seriously, considering it “frivolous,” without realizing how relevant it is in terms of sales and employment. She also pointed a finger at intellectuals and left-leaning politicians, who “remain diffident toward wealth and glamour,” while money, she said, can actually help “organize art, culture and fashion.”
“We live in a weak cultural world, we are a country that has never wanted or known how to protect and promote its immense landscape and artistic patrimony,” she added.
Made in Italy is no longer enough, according to the designer, as the impression outside Italy is that the country has “less resources, culture, protagonists, ideas, vitality and money,” and that being less attractive, “fashion goes elsewhere, looking for the best.” Prada admitted that she herself, “looking for that attraction that is called glamour,” has chosen Paris to show her Miu Miu line.
”Fashion shows and events are extremely important, unfortunately, in the past years, only the major luxury groups could afford such shows. It is important to give way and create a platform for younger, less known designers too”. Asked whether Italy has regain its once leading position, Miuccia Prada responded that ”not only there is less money but also those who have the money do not understand that fashion cannot exist isolated, but as part of an integrated system, which can generate ideas. We need to bring together philosophers, art curators, sociologists who can generate such ideas.