Former Dazed 100er and Fashion East fellow Maximilian Davis has been appointed the new creative director of Salvatore Ferragamo. The news comes less than a month after the Manchester-born designer graduated from Lulu Kennedy’s incubator, with Davis now just one of a handful of Black designers to have been handed the reins of a historic fashion house – others including Ozwald Boateng for Givenchy menswear in 2003, Olivier Rousteing for Balmain in 2011, and Virgil Abloh for Louis Vuitton in 2018.
“I am deeply honoured to be joining Ferragamo, and grateful for the opportunity to build on the rich and profound heritage of the house,” Davis wrote on Instagram. “Ferragamo represents a dedication to timeless elegance and sophistication that I find incredibly inspiring. I’m looking forward to articulating my vision, elevated by the codes of Italian craftsmanship, quality and innovation.” Indeed, Davis’ has built a design vocabulary on the notion of elegance. “I want to show that Black elegance is a thing,” Davis told us back in October 2020. “I feel like we’ve always been seen in a one-dimensional way, and I really wanted to make something that showed people of colour and Black people in a different light.”
The announcement may explain why Davis, who was pipped to win this year’s LVMH Prize, suddenly withdrew from the competition before the Paris showroom had opened. It also strikes another name from Abloh’s potential longlist of successors at Louis Vuitton. “I am delighted to welcome Maximilian at the house of Ferragamo,” Marco Gobbetti, CEO of Ferragamo, said. “The clarity of his vision together with the level of execution and his powerful aesthetic make him one of the most brilliant talents of his generation. His work is defined by elegance, refined sensuality, and constant commitment to quality. Through his lens of contemporary sensibility, he will write a new, exciting chapter for this house built on a heritage of creativity, craftsmanship, sophistication, and outstanding human values”.
Davis will officially start at Ferragamo this Wednesday. Click here to travel back to the designer’s Fashion East swansong and click through the gallery above to see more of his work.