The North Face x Gucci, a documentary celebrates the shamanic side of fashion

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What unites love for nature, sustainability and symbolic charge, if not a fashion collection that perfectly embodies each of these values? And not a simple seasonal fashion line, but a collaboration between an outdoor giant and the most popular brand – and undoubtedly one of the most futuristic – on the international scene: respectively, The North Face e Gucci. A capsule that opens well this 2021, as well as the collection, in fact, of the moment. Not guessing its success would be impossible, since we are talking about one iconic brand of outdoor clothing and the aesthetics of the 90s, today essential especially in sportswear, and of what is his most ambitious partnership ever.

The Californian company has created together with Gucci a collection that not only reflects well the spirit of the time in terms of inspiration, citing in particular the 70s, but also and above all the priority theme of sustainability, combined with that of adventure and love for nature.

The latter, in particular, has always strongly influenced Alessandro Michele’s creations, as well as a rethinking of the fashion system for which he himself, as creative director, has shown that he is fighting at the forefront. And the collaboration with The North Face is a further example, in line with the commitment of both: one of the most used fabrics was the ECONYL, a recycled nylon fabric which has become the key component of suitcases and bags, also used in Gucci’s previous 100% sustainable collections, Off The Grid. The capsules with The North Face also (in the gallery), marks the continuation – which seems to be far from stopping – of the trend that intertwines technical clothing and high-end fashion, expressed through what wants to be communicated as true luxury: the possibility of live in close contact with nature and enjoy it, even through what we consciously wear. An act, that of dressing, which in a certain sense could be considered modern shamanism, as Alessandro Michele himself declares in the documentary on the collection, made by Sean Vegezzi.

The visual artist wanted to merge his passion for the outdoors with the collection’s homage to the founder of North Face, Douglas Tompkins, but also to his wife Susie Tompkins and Kenneth “Hap” Klopp, who between the years’ The 60s and 70s grew the brand from a humble mountaineering shop in San Francisco to one of the world’s leading suppliers. To be celebrated are beauty and functionality, narrating the creations through the eyes of those who gave them life, from Alessandro Michele to David Whetstone, Design Manager of The North Face for Global Collaborations, with archival materials but also insights from the style office, product developer and craftsmen. To this narrative are added the splendid images of the Dolomites and the Sierra Nevada in California, the process of design and production in factories and a reflection on the cultural figures who contributed to the popularity of the brand: among them, the American professional climber Nina Williams, as well as the street artist Post AOW. A collaboration from which, also through the visual work of Sean Vegezzi, shines through force of the nature but also the “shamanic power to push us into different territories”, as affirmed by Alessandro Michele. Even through fashion.

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