Hazine

15.05.2016 - Katherine Koniecki

Label

STEALTH EVERLASTING

BOTTEGA VENETA WAS BORN IN A TIME WHEN DRESSING RICH EXUDED ARTFUL DISTRESSING. CREATIVE DIRECTOR TOMAS MAIER KEEPS THE 1966 FOUNDING GROUND OF VICENZA, ITALY INTACT TO TELL A STORY THAT ELEVATES ‘BROKEN IN’ WITH AN EVERLASTING AND UNDERSTATED LUXURY.

Andy Warhol said it best citing “the poor-rich-look” in union with the Bottega Veneta boom that dressed New York’s Studio 54 tribe. A decade prior, “Shop of the Veneto region” translated the Italian luxury goods house, which opted out of flashy logos in favour of defining the intrecciato leather weaving technique to bear the sight of understated. Today the house’s Creative Director, Tomas Maier’s, ‘stealth luxury’ unifies the ties that amplify the house heritage from then till now.

GOODS FOR THE JETSET

Discreet luxury gripped an instant desirability. Bottega Veneta’s richness matched an exquisite construction that boomed through the late 60’s and word of the impeccably made Italian leather goods travelled fast. Embraced by New York’s 70’s artfully driven crew, richness imbued among the jetsetters, Andy Warhol too was a loyal fan. Though the high times reached a peak and by the 90’s, Bottega Veneta’s hype needed a fix to prevent the brand’s detrimental decline. Jetset prince, Tom Ford, stepped in to appoint a new Creative Director, someone under whose direction the brand would thrive with the subtle prowess of the original luxury codes. Tomas Maier, formerly a freelance designer and women’s ready-to-wear designer at Hermès, was summoned by Ford personally in 2001 to take on the role.

MORE THAN LEATHER LUST

Restraint and integrity sum up Tomas Maier’s philosophy. Craftsmanship and intrecciato woven leather handbags stay embedded in the product offering and shape remains understated with a lightness that floats over the body. A feeling of worn and broken in keeps the house heritage intact and it’s this key direction to success that keeps Bottega Veneta’s customer assertive in their choice. Maier’s take on advertising has elevated the brand’s appeal through an image recognition that reinstates the magic of collaboration; no great house can thrive alone. Through his own love of photography, the Creative Director has called on a collective tribe to immortalize each season’s envisioned story. Handpicked by Maier himself, celebrated photographers like Peter Lindbergh, Ryan McGinley, Juergen Teller and Robert Longo among others, have contributed to Bottega Veneta’s visual rhythm since 2002, which has catapulted Maier’s vision for the brand into a billion dollar company.

SHAKING UP THE PILLARS

The German designer comes from a family lineage of architects, whose direction has instated a multifaceted product offering to extend past the clothing alone. The brand has evolved to include beautiful objects like eyewear, luggage, jewellery and a home collection of furniture and accessories produced with the same artisanal care and precision as the clothes themselves. Spatial branding has recently built the newest Bottega Veneta retail establishment, recently unveiled in Beverly Hills, California. A free-standing maison to mark the brand’s 50th birthday, outfitted in a Mediterranean air that merges Californian 80's architecture. Environment is of unequivocal importance, whereby retail and headquarters both merit top consideration. A minted design, Bottega Veneta’s villa atelier stands in Italy’s founding Veneto region, with top consciousness to workplace sustainability and another example of how the brand’s contemporary heritage remains solid. The feeling of “coming back to rediscover something you didn’t expect to see” is Maier’s homage to a heritage infused with the exquisite artistry that thrives under his momentous influence. It’s a steadfast newness that becomes more and more vibrant with the time.

Short Facts

Trademark

Leather goods make up a significant part of the brand’s offering and the leather intrecciato weaving technique is an artisanal handcrafted house signature. Logos are kept to a minimum alongside the 1966 heritage message, “When your own initials are enough.”

Distinctiveness

German Creative Director, Tomas Maier, has revived the brand since 2001 to create products for the customer who, in his words, doesn’t have to prove to be someone because they already are. ‘Stealth wealth’ is Maier’s understated and worn-in aesthetic which mixes in restraint to create garments that float over the body.

Awards And Recognition

Bottega Veneta was awarded the “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Award” in 2014 for its eco-friendly headquarters built in Montebello Vicentino, Italy. Beyond the beautiful clothes, the brand was awarded the Wallpaper Award for Best Library for the first piece of furniture designed in 2007. Tomas Maier was awarded the ACE Award for designer of the year in 2012.

Anecdote

Andy Warhol’s factory crew were enamored by Bottega Veneta’s jetset chic and the brand was all over Studio 54 in the 70's and 80's. Warhol himself made a film for the brand in the 80's.

Bottega Veneta SS16 Campaign

Timeline

1966 - Vicenza

Bottega Veneta is established in Vicenza, Italy by Michele Taddei and Renzo Zengiaro.

1970 - No Logo

Bottega Veneta begins to gain a reputation among the jetset and becomes recognised for its no logo approach to luxury. The company slogan, “When your own initials are enough” catches on.

1980 - Studio 54

Among the jetset crowd, Bottega Veneta makes an entry into the American market. The brand becomes a hit at Studio 54 in New York and among Andy Warhol’s infamous art troupe.

2001 - Maier Age

German designer Tomas Maier becomes Bottega Veneta’s Creative Director and he is appointed for the role by Tom Ford. The brand is acquired by French luxury goods holding company Kerig in the same year.

2005 - First line

Tomas Maier presents his first ready to wear women’s collection for the house.

2006 - Artisan Making

Bottega Veneta sets up an artisan school named La Scuola della Pelletteria, which teaches the house’s artisanal craft including the house’s signature intrecciato leather weaving technique.

2013 - New Digs

The company builds a new atelier in an 18th century villa in Montebello Vicentino to connect the craft with the founding Veneto grounds of the house.

2015 - Bound Synergy

Publishing house Rizzoli launches a book “The Art of Collaboration” project. The publication features the contribution of celebrated artists and photographers to Bottega Veneta’s advertising campaigns in collaboration with Tomas Maier between 2002 and 2016.

2016 - Maison Beverly Hills

The newest Bottega Veneta flagship on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills has been built in line with the house’s 50th birthday. Mediterranean meets 1980 California in the richly lush architecture. Two more maison style stores in Milan and New York are set to follow in 2017.

Photo:

© Imaxtree

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