Donatella Versace Interviews Riccardo Tisci

Amidst the recent shuffles at a few well-known fashion houses, one thing remains the same: Riccardo Tisci is still the creative director at Givenchy. And despite rumors of taking over John Galliano’s role at Dior, we applaud the Italian fashion designer for maintaining his loyalty to the French fashion house he’s been with since 2005 – even if he has someone like Donatella Versace questioning his motivation. In collaboration with Interview Magazine, the head designer of Versace sat down with Tisci to discuss the elephant in the room, Italian pride, and the real Givenchy woman (hint: it’s Donatella). Read on for some highlights.

On the sartorial melting pot of his designs: “For me, there is a base, which is my Italian roots. It’s a strong passion for fashion, a passion for sensuality and dressing for one’s self. Then when I went to England, to Saint Martins, I was traumatized, in a positive way. It was that British sense of transgression and the dark. Then when I went to Paris, I was doing couture, which everyone was saying was finished. Bullshit! For me, in the end, it was all a mixing of ingredients.”

On selling sex, the Italian way: “I say to you sincerely that what I very much admire about the Versace maison, and what I am still trying to learn to do myself as I am still young, is that from day one until today, Versace is the peak of sexy but never crosses that red line into the vulgar. Many other brands that have tried to outdo Versace have crossed that line. But I think that’s what you and I have in common, Donatella, that careful balance. It makes me proud to be an Italian.”

On his muses: “My luck has always been how I’ve had a family of women around me, and I have women who are very close to me now—for example, Mariacarla [Boscono], Carine Roitfeld, Marina Abramovic. I have different women whom I adore and value. Everyone thinks that for many years Carine Roitfeld was my stylist, which is not true. Carine was like Mariacarla to me.”

On Donatella (and more Italy love): “Donatella, you are so much of a Givenchy woman! [laughs] I say it because I want the world to know. For me, aesthetically, you represent what the Italian woman is. There is always the American rock thing, the aristocratic, above-the-rest British manner, but Italy is at the heart of it. In fact, you and I have tried several times to do projects together. I would really love to see you dressed in Givenchy.”

On leaving Givenchy for Dior: “I don’t know what will happen. Sincerely, I feel sorry for John [Galliano]. But for this moment I am leaving aside all the gossip of ‘I am going here, I am going there,’ because there is a lot of gossip circulating and there always will be. I will tell you, in this moment, I am very happy at Givenchy and it is a moment in which I am bringing the game to the next level. So I tell you, I feel at home. It’s as if it were my son. I don’t know how to explain it. It would be very difficult for me to leave.”

Read the full interview here.

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