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Valentino’s creative director, Pierpaolo Piccioli, understands the emotion that a dress emits. Indeed, his collections for the storied fashion label are marked for their sweeping grandeur, romance, and ability to connect with audiences on a much deeper level than what is seen on the surface. And he is extending this set of values to the brand’s fall 2020 campaign. Titled #ValentinoEmpathy, the advertisements will consist of portraits shot remotely by a series of amateur photographers in their own settings.
Relinquishing some measure of creative control is now standard across the fashion industry and beyond. With guidelines to self-isolate amid the coronavirus outbreak, companies are finding innovative ways to produce content, enlisting talent they trust implicitly to convey their vision. For Piccioli, corralling a group who understand his ethos wasn’t hard to find. He’s accrued a loyal base of fans, women from different backgrounds and professions who see themselves reflected in his designs.
They include actresses Laura Dern, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rossy de Palma, and Tiffany Tang Yan; supermodels Kristen McMenamy, Laetitia Casta, Liu Wen, Mariacarla Boscono, and Naomi Campbell; activists Janet Mock and Rula Jebreal; and up-and-comers Ellery Harper and Tali Lennox. Each of these personalities, who are all residing in different locations, will have friends or family photograph portraits of them wearing pieces from both the men’s and women’s fall 2020 collections.
Moreover, none of these talents will receive compensation for being part of the #ValentinoEmpathy campaign. Instead, all their fees, along with a donation of €1 million (more than $1 million), will be offered to the Lazzaro Spallanzani Hospital in Rome, Italy, the nation’s hub for combating COVID-19. This follows the €2 million that Mayhoola, Valentino’s parent company, donated to the Sacco Hospital and Protezione Civile in Italy, the €1 million to La Fondation Hôpitaux de Paris-Hôpitaux de France, and €1 million to the field hospital set up at Feria de Madrid in Spain.