When one’s atelier literally sits in the shadow of the Vatican, it is not so much a question of whether the church will inspire one’s designs, but when and to what effect. For Pierpaolo Piccioli of Valentino, the answers were now and with great success.
The parallels are convincing—all that initiation, craft, training, lore—and the aesthetic impulses not dissimilar. His starting references were the portraits of Zurbarán, those of cardinals and bishops, nuns and martyrs. There are hooded capes and silhouettes that resemble the robes of priests, and there are hammered metal bags with enamel mosaic details (a collaboration with Harumi Klossowska) in the shapes of animal heads meant to symbolize the seven deadly sins.