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Massimiliano Giornetti, new director of Polimoda

Text Teresa Favi

June 14, 2021

Polimoda announces the end-of-year event: June 29 at 8 pm in Piazza Santa Maria Novella

For the occasion we publish our exclusive interview with director Massimiliano Giornetti

Polimoda celebrates its 35th anniversary and to mark the occasion, announces a special event during the hot days of Pitti Uomo, on 29 June at 8 pm, and the publication of a book that will recount the best of the school's creative talents.

For the occasion we publish our exclusive interview with Massimiliano Giornetti, director of Polimoda since February.

A degree in Spanish literature from the University of Florence, then studies at Polimoda which led to a long career in the world of fashion, culminating in the role of creative director for Salvatore Ferragamo, now Gionetti, born in 1971, is at the helm of the Florentine fashion school where he graduated in 1999: "There comes a time when you want to put your know-how, your culture, your experience in fashion at the service of young creatives".

The challenge is great, because we are talking about 2,000 students from 70 countries for an international school that has chosen to stay only in Florence. A local soul, therefore, but in constant dialogue with the world, as happened recently with the projects Human Poetics, the fashion movie presented during Milan Fashion Week and the virtual exhibition Postcards from Florence, curated with passion by Giornetti during Pandemia. Polimoda is now 35 years old and for the occasion, the new director has in store a special event in June and the publication of a book that will tell the story of the fashion world.
the publication of a book that will tell the best of the creative talents of the school.

What do you see in the future of fashion from your privileged point of view?
The future will be positive for those who have strong ideas and identity and for those who are able to come up with a courageous and different project.
courageous and different project.
Do you want to push Polimoda in this direction?
I imagine Polimoda as a research hub and a metissage of cultures. A place like the school was for the Greeks, where people study, work and dialogue. I feel a great need to involve the senses (after so much distancing and digital-only connections), thought and speech.
It's hard to think that a creative talent has to express itself through words....
For too long, fashion has created only through image as an end in itself, starting from something existing, something inauthentic. I believe that starting again from words is a way to be able to develop something truly innovative.
Florence and Polimoda have always been side by side. How can we develop
this synergy?

In the year of Pandemic, the concept of fashion capitals has disappeared, everyone has moved out of the big centers and in this phenomenon the concept of the neighborhood has made its way: the neighborhood, the place where attention to quality has been preserved, which in my thinking translates into quality craftsmanship. We need to start again from here, and I believe that in this vision Florence has a privileged role with the specific world dedicated to leather and leather goods in Scandicci up to the tanning district of Santa Croce and the textile district of Prato, but also the world of metal accessories from jewel to hardwear. 90% of these objects used all over the world come from here, from families like the Pinzauti. And if we want to look into the beating heart of the city, how can we not mention the ancient Florentine Silk Factory and the Lisio Foundation, to which I would add the interiors linked to the universe of carving produced by Florentine craftsmen. Florence holds this immense heritage of artisan tradition, our task is to understand it and project it into the future.

Speaking of the Florence of artisans, what are your favorite addresses?
For me, the Officina di Santa Maria Novella is Proust's madeleine. When I pass by Via della Scala, the fragrance of the potpourri that emanates from the entrance is an almost ancestral call that I find hard to resist. Another emblematic place is Loretta Caponi's store and workshop that I have been visiting since I was a child, with my mother. I love her ability to integrate culture and craftsmanship, and her balance that never crosses the line between creativity and bad taste. I also love an artisan jeweler Alessandro Dari, his alchemical spirit fascinates me a lot.
A place with high positive vibrations?
The Cappella Brancacci which is located in my neighborhood, the Oltrarno. It's a magical place, little known and also a bit secret because you can't access it from the main entrance of the Chiesa del Carmine. Seeing the stylistic perfection with which the master and the pupil, Masolino and Masaccio, compensate each other excites me, because you can hardly tell where one ends and the other begins, and it becomes a unicum. This is one of the spaces I love most in Florence. But there is also another place that I love very much and that is the garden
of the Irises. For that month when you can access it, in May, it's really worth a visit.

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