At the turn of the fifteenth century–long, long before FERRAGAMO released their Autumn/Winter 2023 Renaissance campaign–in an era darkened by papal politics and disease, an obsessive book collector named Poggio Bracciolini plucked the last copy of Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things from a German monastery. From the rediscovery of that ancient text– a text that absolved man of the oppressive godliness of the Dark Ages– sprung an era of verve, a lusty period of creativity, of excess, of art and of science and of boundless beauty. From that singular collector, from that singular work, the future was formed. The Renaissance was a rebirth which emerged from the vessel of curiosity possessed by one man. An obsessed man. A dedicated man.
And so goes the story of Salvatore Ferragamo, an Italian immigrant to Los Angeles, from whom a ferociously fashionable and innovative leather goods brand sprung in 1927. Ferragamo’s singular desire for quality and beauty endured long past his lifetime. The eponymous brand bears the fruits of the man’s obsessions today. In the newest iteration of the brand’s near century-long legacy, FERRAGAMO has partnered with Florence’s Uffuzi Gallery to celebrate Ferragamo’s hometown of Florence, Italy, and to pay homage to the Renaissance.
FERRAGAMO’s creative director, Maximilian Davis, has brought real Renaissance-era paintings to the forefront of the campaign. Among others, works include Alesso Baldovinetti’s “Annunciation” (1457), Giorgio Vasari’s “Portrait of Alessandro de Medici” (1534), and Botticelli’s “Portrait of a Man with a Medal of Cosimo the Elder” (1475), all of which foreground the opulence and ecstasy imbued in the collection itself. “The Renaissance is hardwired into Florence, and Florence is hardwired into Ferragamo,” Davis says. “At this time of a new beginning at the house, it made perfect sense to reclaim the cradle of the Renaissance as our spiritual home, and to harness the deep, artistic spirit of this city to showcase the new collection.”
Given Salvatore Ferragamo’s interest in the period (his shop at 6683 Hollywood Boulevard featured walls full of lush art inspired directly by the Italian Renaissance) and the FERRAGAMO’S storied past, the Renaissance-inspired collection and subsequent campaign imagery seem to represent a return home for the brand. In FERRAGAMO’s Fall Winter 2023 campaign, photographer Tyler Mitchell and campaign creative director Ferdinando Verderi reach into the past and grasp that singular curiosity, that lust for renewal, and turn it into a thing of beauty.