Jil Sander Gets New Creative Directors; Emilio Pucci Loses One


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Massimo Giorgetti, who announced his departure from Emilio Pucci this week.

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Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

Another week, another round of designer musical chairs in the creative studios of top-tier European luxury houses.

On Thursday, Emilio Pucci announced the abrupt departure of Massimo Giorgetti, and Friday brought the appointment of the husband-and-wife team Luke and Lucie Meier as joint creative directors at Jil Sander.

Pucci, owned by the luxury giant LVMH, said that after four seasons as creative director, Mr. Giorgetti would be leaving the company, effective immediately.

Mr. Giorgetti, a maverick Italian designer and former D.J. who succeeded Peter Dundas at Pucci in March 2015, initially made his name in the industry with the contemporary label MSGM, which specializes in quirky digital graphic prints and bold colorful shapes. His efforts, perhaps too avant-garde for the average Pucci consumer, received a lukewarm response from retailers and the media alike. In her review of the fall 2017 collection, Vanessa Friedman of The New York Times called the show “a look-at-me heave,” adding that the clothes were “a queasy-making mix of highlighter green and orange, hot pink and brown in a disco/loungewear fiesta that included, inexplicably, hats with fringe completely obscuring the face and hanging down to the waist in the front.”

Less than six weeks later, Mr. Giorgetti has departed to once again focus his efforts on MSGM. He called his tenure at Pucci “an inspiring journey, which has also contributed to my professional growth” and “a beautiful adventure.” In a statement, he thanked LVMH; Laudomia Pucci, the daughter of the founder; and Mauro Grimaldi, the chief executive of the company.

“We have decided by mutual agreement to end the partnership,” Mr. Grimaldi said in a statement. “I would like to thank Massimo for the great professionalism shown during these last two years of collaboration.”

On Friday morning, a long-circling rumor was confirmed when Luke and Lucie Meier were named creative directors at Jil Sander, replacing Rodolfo Paglialunga, who left the company last month.

Ms. Meier, together with Serge Ruffieux (now the creative director of Carven), led the ready-to-wear and couture studios at Dior under the leadership of Raf Simons, taking over the creative reins after his exit and the arrival of Maria Grazia Chiuri. Previously, Ms. Meier had worked for Marc Jacobs, then the creative director of Louis Vuitton, and Nicolas Ghesquière, then the creative director of Balenciaga. Mr. Meier is a former creative director at the cult streetwear brand Supreme and a founder, in 2015, of the modern urban men’s wear label OAMC. The Meiers’ first collection for Jil Sander will be shown in September in Milan.

“We feel proud and honored to join this beautiful brand,” the couple said in a joint statement after the announcement. “We hope to show the affection we have for this brand through our work, as Jil Sander has had such a profound influence on our paths.”

Alessandra Bettari, the chief executive of the brand, said that she expected “the creation of very clever collections” and that the Meiers had “a vision which is modern, cohesive, and in touch with what is relevant now.”

Jil Sander, known for its minimalist codes, has undergone enormous creative flux in recent years, with Ms. Sander leaving and returning to the company three times before finally stepping down for good in 2013, to be followed by Mr. Paglialunga. The Meiers, relative unknowns, are part of a recent trend among high-profile fashion houses to opt for lower-profile designers instead of starry names. See, for example, Natacha Ramsay-Levi at Chloé, whose appointment to creative director was announced last month.

Now the question is whether Pucci will take the same tack to fill its new job opening. Presumably we will know soon enough.

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