Italian fashion turns 70 on 12 February
And it does so in Florence, in Villa Torrigiani to be precise, where that same fashion was born by Giovanni Battista Giorgini
Italian fashion turns 70.
It was 12 February 1951 at Villa Torrigiani, the home of Giovanni Battista Giorgini: a man who sensed the potential of his country and turned it into a brand to be exported. His aptitude for beauty - which stemmed from a refined upbringing - led him, between the 1920s and the early post-war period, to undertake an intense commercial activity between Italy and the United States linked to fine craftsmanship. But his gaze went further: he understood that made in Italy was a winning concept and thus laid the fundamental foundations for Italian fashion.
In front of the American buyers and journalists, the Fontana sisters, Jole Veneziani, Fabiani, Pucci, Noberasco, Carosa and Schuberth paraded. It was an absolute jubilation: for Giorgini and for Italian fashion, which with dynamism, imagination and quality surpassed that of France.
From 1952 to 1982 the Sala Bianca in Palazzo Pitti became the main stage for fashion in Italy and in 1954 the Italian Centre for Italian Fashion was founded in Florence, an organisation set up to promote fashion-related events. But the 1960s and their revolutions rapidly changed the scenarios: it was no longer the time for hegemonies and Milan and Rome were claiming well-defined roles in the fashion industry.
On 12 February 2021, on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the first Italian Fashion Show, and the 50th anniversary of the death of G.B. Giorgini (Forte dei Marmi 25.08.1898-Florence 02.01.1971) an international online conference will be held entitled: Giovanni Battista Giorgini, from Artistic Craftsmanship to High Fashion, Italian Soft Power.
Organised by Neri Fadigati, President of Archivio Giorgini and the University of Bologna, in collaboration with Associazione OMA, Osservatorio dei Mestieri d'Arte and Fondazione CR Firenze, with the patronage of the Municipality of Florence and Regione Toscana and the partnership of Gruppo Editoriale, the initiative will see the participation of lecturers and experts in the field connected from various countries.
The coordination of the meeting will be held in the ballroom of Villa Torrigiani in Florence, where the historic first presentation took place on 12 February 1951, thanks to the permission kindly granted by US uni-source, the company that currently occupies the space.
The initiative is the first in the series planned to celebrate the two anniversaries, which coincide with the 100th edition of Pitti Uomo to be held in June. On that occasion, the first biography of G.B. Giorgini will be presented and an exhibition will be held.