Pin It
All clothing by Raf Simons / Sterling Ruby AW14Photography Ben Toms, fashion Robbie Spencer; taken from the spring/summer 2014 issue of Dazed

Raf Simons is taking his next show to Florence

In June, the designer is staging his SS17 show and a ‘special project’ in the Tuscan city

13 years after Raf Simons’ seminal “The Fourth Sex. Adolescent Extremes” exhibition, the Belgian designer is returning to Florence’s biannual menswear trade show Pitti Uomo to stage his SS17 show and an accompanying (but as yet unspecified) “special project”.

“Florence holds a special place in my heart as, over the years, I have regularly come back to show my work or to collaborate on ventures that closely mirrored my thoughts about it,” says Simons, speaking on his decision to show at Pitti instead Paris Men’s Fashion Week. “I am thrilled to be there again this season to present my SS collection as well as a special project we are developing especially for Pitti.”

As well as his “The Fourth Sex. Adolescent Extremes” exhibition, Simons also staged his eponymous label’s tenth-anniversary show in the city in 2005, along with Jil Sander’s SS11 show – during his seven-year tenure as the brand’s creative director. “We are both happy and proud to be welcoming Raf Simons back to Florence,” says Lapo Cianchi, Pitti’s director of communications and events. “(He) has been a central figure in some of the most memorable Pitti Uomo events.”

However, Simons won’t be the only special guest at this season’s Pitti Uomo. Russian designer Gosha Rubchinskiy is also staging his SS17 show as part of the event, following on from fellow menswear provocateurs Hood By Air, Moschino and, most recently, Juun.J who have previously show as ‘guest designers’.

Today’s announcement comes in the wake of designer’s AW16 show, which was staged earlier this year. The first since his departure from the house of Christian Dior, the collection was inspired by the world of cult film director David Lynch. “Actually, today is (his) birthday,” he told us backstage. “I didn’t know. But I like to think that I am now dedicating this show to him.” As for what he’ll conjure up this season, time will tell.