Ferragamo Pre-Fall 2023 Campaign
Michael Meir-Wright examines the new vision creative director Maximilian Davis is bringing to the brand
For the new Ferragamo pre-fall 2023 campaign, creative director Maximilian Davis pays homage to the unmistakable design codes of the American Western film genre. Using Salvatore Ferragamo’s work on the 1923 silent film The Covered Wagon as a touchstone, the British-born designer crafts a cinematically intriguing proposition and explores notions of contemporary necessity through the lens of old Hollywood glamour and the spirit of 19th century pioneers.
Entitled A Fresh Perspective, the story marks the first collaboration between Davis and photographer Tyler Mitchell, longtime associates whose shared history and community have led to mutual admiration and common creative sensibilities. The new visuals perfectly capture the latter’s laid-back and unforced style that has been a motif of his celebrated work. Framed by the Californian wilderness and retro-brutalist architecture, Mitchell’s lens offers a new and skilful examination of the brand’s universe: indisputably timeless yet unapologetically modern all at once.
This dichotomy is explored within the collection itself. The iconic Rainbow sandal, first designed for Judy Garland in 1938, is reconceptualised in emerald green; perhaps a loving reference to the legendary actress’ most beloved film, The Wizard of Oz. Elsewhere, gingham prints are a recurring and welcome theme, adorning sleeveless shirts and dresses that lift the venerable check to luxurious new heights. Finally, a bustier dress rendered in gold-foiled eelskin flirts with both the opulence of the red carpets of yesteryear and the modern minimalism of the 21st century.And what would cinematic imagery be without a short film to accompany them? Directed with an anticipatory atmosphere, sweeping shots of the West Coast landscape add grandeur and scale to the campaign to mimic the wide-open vistas of pioneer country. A propulsive and percussive soundtrack adds to the tension, as the cast gather together for a seemingly unknown purpose – a story dynamic from the best of Spaghetti WesternsA Fresh Perspective is a tantalising and inviting window into Ferragamo’s new proposition, one that pays homage to its founder’s trailblazing legacy while charting a brave new course as the 21st century’s new pioneers.
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