After six months at the helm, Justin O’Shea has left Italian luxury tailoring brand Brioni, in what must surely be one of the shortest creative directorships in recent fashion memory. In fact, it was so short that he only got round to staging one runway show.
While the brand did not give a specific reason for his departure, it did say, “The strategy of revitalisation of Brioni that started at the beginning of this year is set to continue being implemented through a long-term plan aimed to further establish the brand as a leader in the luxury menswear category.”
The brand also cited Gianluca Flore, CEO of Brioni, who wished to thank the Australian for “his collaboration with the brand during this period”.
O’Shea’s appointment, back in March, was met with surprise by much of the fashion community given that his background is in buying, not design. Previously fashion director at mytheresa.com and with no formal training or experience in designing clothes, O’Shea was widely believed to have been selected for the job because of his street style cred (note the beard, tatts and slick suits) and his Instagram following.
His sole runway show featured a collection cut in his own image – tailoring powered by, in Vogue critic Sarah Mower’s words, “no-messing-about testosterone-fueled aspirations”. He also did a campaign for the brand which starred Metallica and was loosely based on the cover of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody album.
According to Brioni, O’Shea’s next collection for the brand will be presented to buyers in the Milan showroom from mid-November 2016. It will not be showcased via a runway show.