Gucci Garden Opens in Florence Taking Experiential Retail to Next Level
BY GILLIAN CASTRO
Gucci has opened its new Gucci Garden in Florence. Designed by Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele, Gucci Garden blends the old and the new by showcasing recent work and contemporary art with pieces from collections dating back to the House’s Florentine origins in 1921. The name Gucci Garden was chosen to symbolically show metaphorical and literal references to the natural world of plants, flowers, and animals.
The Gucci Garden is set out over two floors and features clothing, accessories, video installations, artworks, documents, and artifacts all organized by separate themes. Contemporary pieces are juxtaposed with vintage items and artists Jayde Fish, Trevor Andrew, and Coco Capitán have been invited to decorate walls. Their work sits alongside Gucci fabric wallpaper and a nineteenth-century equestrian oil portrait by Domenico Induno.
Alessandro Michele worked with curator Maria Luisa Frisa to organize the Gucci Garden Galleria. All Gucci designers past and present are represented through the Gucci Garden as a way to show the history of the brand.
In addition to the beautiful art, guests can stop by Gucci Osteria for a bit to eat. An intimate restaurant open on the ground floor, by Chef Massimo Bottura. The menu takes influences from Bottura’s travels and applies them to Italian cuisine.
The ground floor is split across two large rooms for the restaurant area and a retail space. The products available here are designed exclusively for Gucci Garden and are not available in other Gucci stores. These include shoes and bags in special materials and several one-of-a-kind creations.
The retail space has been designed to respect and celebrate the original architecture of the palazzo. The room that houses ready-to-wear, accessories, and décor features a color scheme that combines burnt yellow and red to pick out the architectural forms of arched doorways and windows and the floor is made of hand-aged marble tiles.
Each room throughout the Gucci Garden features a different tribute to the past and present of the Gucci brand. On the first floor, the ‘Guccification’ room shows the many ways the Gucci logo has been transformed from vintage to contemporary pieces. The ‘Paraphernalia’ room focuses on the brand’s famous icons, such as loafers, the horsebit, signature House prints, and bamboo. The ‘Cosmorama’ room is dedicated to the House’s origins as a maker of leather goods for a sophisticated and cosmopolitan traveler. The ‘Cinema De Camera’ room is a small auditorium where the audience can watch experimental films.
The rooms on the second floor include ‘De Rerum Natura’ and ‘Ephemera’. These rooms include a history of the brand since its inception and a retracing of its steps to the present day through documents, videos, and memorabilia.
The Gucci Garden will be open 7 days a week year round starting January 10th, 2018 with an admission price of 8 euros. Fifty percent of each ticket sale will be donated to support restoration projects in the city of Florence.
De Rerum Natura