Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi
Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi

DALLAS, Apr 1, 2008 / FW/ — After a long wait in fashion terms, Gianfranco Ferré S.p.A. announced today the appointment of Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi as Creative Directors of the Gianfranco Ferré Women’s line. They will debut in their new role at Gianfranco Ferré with the Spring/Summer 2009 Women’s collection.

Born in San Severo di Puglia, Tommaso Aquilano attended the Rome Fashion and Costume Academy. Roberto Rimondi, a Bologna native, studied at the Carlo Secoli Institute in Milan. They met professionally in 1988.

The two designers won first prize in the Italian Vogue/Alta Roma-sponsored “Who’s on Next” contest open exclusively to young talents. With the Summer/Spring 2007 season, they took on the job of Malo Creative Directors, that they leave now to assume this new position at the Creative Direction of Gianfranco Ferré.

After all the rumors during the recently concluded Fall 2008 fashion season, this news is highly anticipated and ends the long list of speculations even rumors on who will be the next Creative Director at Gianfranco Ferré after Lars Nilsson unceremoniously left the post even before he presented his first collection.

Though the suspense is over, one thing very noticeable to the announcement is that Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi are going to take the creative helm of the Gianfranco Ferré Women’s line ONLY. There was no mention of the menswear line and /or the accessories line.

Has Gianfranco Ferré chosen the same path that Gucci took after Tom Ford left, i.e., there are different artistic directors for menswear, womenswear and accessories? Actually, Gucci is not alone in having more than one creative director for their lines. Calvin Klein has taken the same path. Though the practice is not unheard of, having more than one creative director in a fashion house is not the norm.

“I am sure that Tommaso Aquilano e Roberto Rimondi have the talent – now recognized internationally – to interpret Gianfranco Ferré’s aesthetic codes in the best of ways, making the most of the brand’s extraordinary potential while remaining true to the qualities of excellence, sheer sophistication and contemporary allure for which it is famously known. I thank them for the first-class work they did as Malo Creative Directors”,  says Tonino Perna, Chairman and CEO of IT Holding  SpA.

“Tommaso Aquilano e Roberto Rimondi shift easily between cool classic and contemporary femininity”, underlines Michela  Piva, CEO of Gianfranco Ferré SpA, “Their designs are rigorous, their feel for quality infallible. These characteristics correspond exactly to what Gianfranco Ferré always upheld.”

Photo courtesy of Gianfranco Ferre