Eros, the god of love, lust and sex, penetrates Michele's creative vision for the Gucci Aria campaign with a series of erotically charged images that explore sex, love and all things desire and integral to being human. Calling upon photographers Mert and Marcus for the campaign, also directed by trusted Gucci art director Christopher Simmonds, Michele's fantasy slowly started to blend with reality, making his dream come to life.
When matters of the heart are concerned, the setting is always crucial. Where did you fall in love? What was the ambience like when you made love? Adding to this, Gucci decided to bring it all back to where it started - The Savoy. An. anonymous hotel formed the backdrop of the Gucci Aria digital show, nodding to The Savoy in London, launching the house's centenary celebrations in April. Armed with an atmosphere as secretive as it is seductive, the hotel location was a trusted one for Gucci; at The Savoy, Guccio Gucci worked as a lift boy in his youth and drew early inspiration from the sophisticated and cosmopolitan guests he observed there. Additionally, the location is a nod to the music video for Madonna's I Want You – soundtrack to the Gucci Aria campaign – also set in a hotel.
Underlining an aesthetic that connects mind and body, models read a range of essays written on desire, adding to Michele's rich vision. Works like Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard, The Work of Art in the Age of its Technical Reproducibility by Walter Benjamin, Bodies that Matter by Judith Butler, Three Contributions to the Theory of Sex by Sigmund Freud and Sexistence by Jean-Luc Nancy were all read aloud, creating a magical universe for Gucci Aria.
In a press release to promote the lust-filled fantasy, the brand wrote:
'The books of Freud, Nancy and Butler describe the universe of desire... becoming objects of attraction themselves. As a consequence, words transfigure into an amorous lexicon. Wisdom offers itself as an erotic body to know and smell. The epistemic subject becomes an insatiable lover. Even words are clothes that we decide to wear, after all. Clothes that tie again mind and body in an erotic weaving that connects us to the flesh of the world.'
Sex is fun; Michele even references sexual acts of service in the campaign after all, but it is not the be-all and end-all of the campaign's message, nor of life itself. This isn't just a campaign about sexual desire; this is about our connection and desire for clothes, our bodies and our minds. This, quite simply, is about love for ourselves and love for others in the purest form.