The Gucci Ken Scott Collection blooms at South Coast Plaza
Gucci has launched a vibrant selection of special pieces within its Epilogue collection, incorporating the work of American fashion designer Ken Scott, who created memorable, colorful, patterned fabrics and a fashion line while living in Milan in the ’60s and ’70s.
Known at the time as “the gardener of fashion,” Scott favored large-scale flowers in his creations including peonies, roses, poppies and sunflowers. In 2019, the Ken Scott brand was acquired by Mantero, the renowned textile company based in Como, Italy.
“Ken Scott was a really great creator of fabrics,” Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele says, “he mapped out flowers with romanticism and flowers into pop culture. He treated flowers like shop signs, he multiplied them, turned them into something that stood out. I like his work because I am obsessed with floral prints.”
For the Ken Scott selection within the Epilogue men’s and women’s collection, Michele resurrected designs replete with vivid colors and floral patterns from the archive preserved by the Ken Scott Foundation, also headquartered in Como.
The distinct prints turn up unexpectedly on fleeces, down jackets, evening gowns, as well as on bags and silk accessories such as headbands.
The women’s collection includes a coat, T-shirts, sweatshirts, underwear, a top, pants, skirts, two blazers, shirts and a number of flowing dresses. All are bright, colorful and impactful, with an exuberant spirit.
Menswear items include a coat, Palace jacket, a suit that can be purchased as separates, down-padded jackets, bowling sets and tracksuit sets.
“Ken Scott mapped out flowers with romanticism and flowers into pop culture.”
– Gucci Creative Director Alessandro Michele
For men’s shoes, the look is sporty and casual; a black cotton fabric is printed with contrasting gold lettering – the initials KS and GG – and mixed with gold and silver flowers. This fabric is also featured in the Gucci Tennis 1977 in lace-up and slip-on models, and the Pursuit slide. The lace-up Tennis shoe also features the green-red-green House Web stripe.
For another version of the Pursuit and a Screener sneaker, a bright Ken Scott floral print called ‘Giardino d’Aprile’, translated as ‘April Garden’ makes a powerful impact. The Screener sneaker has blue heels and a blue-red-blue House Web stripe, while the floral Pursuit slide features a large blue interlocking GG on each shoe.
Meanwhile, four Ken Scott prints (‘Giardino d’Aprile’, ’Zia’, ‘Jenni’ and ‘Pomponica’), all detailed with micro Ken Scott and Gucci script logos are abloom on women’s sneakers (Rhyton, Ace and Screener), slides, loafers (Princetown and Jordaan), flats and high boots.
Scott’s vibrant floral prints also have been deployed on accessories such as scarves, cozy and refined shawls, stoles, headbands in lamé or cotton, baseball caps and bucket hats.
To celebrate the Ken Scott collaboration, Michele conceived a dedicated campaign in which the patterns, prints and colors from the Ken Scott archives were replicated in wallcovering, drapes, tablecloths and upholstery. Photographer Mark Peckmezian shot the clothing, accessories and shoes against the decor of the room. The result: an extravagant realm of intense colors and clashing prints.
Gucci pays tribute to Scott in a special episode of its podcast featuring writer, academic, critic and Professor of Fashion Cultures and Histories at London College of Fashion at the University of the Arts London Shahidha Bari, who narrates a story about the American designer’s life, his work and his legacy in contemporary fashion.
It’s especially fitting and poignant that this Gucci collaboration was launched in February 2021. Nearly 30 years ago, Scott passed away at his home in Eze, France – on February 27, 1991 – to be precise, but his talent and creativity live on, ready for discovery and appreciation by new generations.