‘I have always loved cinema and during my adolescence I dreamed of becoming a movie director. When I discovered fashion and its narrative power, I decided to become a designer. It was for me a natural evolution of a dream’. 

Pierpaolo Piccioli enrolled in Istituto Europeo di Design in Rome for his higher education, during which time his commitment to work cemented. In 1990 he arrived at Fendi to work on the accessories line.In this period he approaches the heart of the profession: the contact with high Italian craftsmanship and the possibility of experimenting with a new approach.

‘Working closely with the artisans and with the Italian expertise has been fundamental. It has allowed me to understand and perceive the rules in order to break them and rewrite them. Savoir-faire is the base of the designer profession. It is the base from which each creative process begins’. 

After his time at Fendi, together with Maria Grazia Chiuri, he drives at Valentino to develop the emerging accessory line. It is a challenge that the two designers take headstrong – to build objects from what the label has traditionalized; Valentino Couture. Soon the experiments lead on all fronts – in 2008, Pierpaolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri are nominated Valentino’s Creative Directors.

Valentino has long been a storied house of note, but under the direction of the creative duo, the brand has been catapulted to the stratosphere – through truly remarkable achievements in creativity, global presence and success.

In 2016, Pierpaolo Piccioli was nominated sole Creative Director of Maison Valentino after the exit of Maria Grazia Chiuri, furthering a start of a new era.

‘I am interested in the idea of humanism that nourishes creativity. The human connection that forms this Maison is for me the best team possible. Here I have discovered that no innovation can exist without a profound knowledge of tradition. At the same time, I know that the sense of limit that springs from this awareness gives you the freedom of thinking of how to trespass it. This, in synthesis, will be the new Valentino direction. A human narration, personal yet unanimous, of a story that is yet to be written.’ 

By Pavan Premaney