There was a time when a Burberry campaign was a siren call for wayward Brit girls and up-and-coming thesps in artfully dishevelled trench coats with an indie-rock soundtrack. Riccardo Tisci’s accession as Burberry Chief Creative Officer bade Goodbye to All That.
The Italian couturier’s first power move was the announcement of a collab with English national treasure Dame Vivienne Westwood. His next? A Burberry monogram in August 2018 cleverly conceptualised by graphic designer Peter Saville, whose artwork for the British bands Joy Division and New Order remains iconic. Riccardo tells Grazia, “When I first started at Burberry, I spent a lot of time in the archives researching the rich history of the house. I quickly became very interested in Thomas Burberry and who he was, not only as an inventor and innovator, but also who he was as a man, a husband and a father. When I saw an image of his initials, the design felt so special and actually very modern, so I quickly developed it into a new code for the house. It’s a symbol that not only embraces Burberry’s heritage but also feels very contemporary.”
Now the checkmate comes in the form of the Monogram collection, dropping this week, bringing out the big guns in the form of Gigi Hadid, plus the best of British creative talent, including photographer Nick Knight and stylist Katy England.
Taking the concept of the millennial multitasker to the next level, Gigi takes on the four distinct identities at the heart of the fashion house – the girl, the boy, the lady and the gentleman – embodying different facets of the collection. Expect oversized T-shirts, cotton-piqué polo shirts, trackpants, nylon bomber jackets, a cashmere football scarf – perhaps a nod to British football-terrace culture? – a bikini and sunglasses.
Gigi, who made her runway debut for the cult Brit brand for AW19, reveals, “I have always loved and respected Riccardo’s work, and I feel so honoured and grateful that he trusted me with this project. My first Burberry show was my first time working with Riccardo, and the timing just felt perfect. It gave us our first opportunity to really get to know each other. The second I heard the creatives for this shoot I understood how I wanted to bring that to life and show different sides of myself through each character. Nick, Katy, and Peter are all legends, masters at what they do; I cherish my time on set with them and I really wanted to give it my all – it was one of the most fun days I’ve ever had.”
On seeing his design manifest into a collection, Peter Saville remarks, “Riccardo and I worked together to update Burberry’s graphic identity last year and it is so exciting and rewarding to see the Monogram find its way into this product range in such a distinguished way.”
Riccardo points out, “What I wanted to do with the collection was to celebrate the breadth of who we speak to as a brand.” And putting his money where his mouth is, prices start from Dhs300. Join the conversation when the Monogram collection launches online on 22 May and see it for yourself with the pop-up at The Dubai Mall from 13-22 June.
Photos: Nick Knight courtesy of Burberry