By Giulia Piceni. Cover image: Pitti Immagine Uomo 102. Photo: AKAstudio-collective. Courtesy Pitti Immagine Uomo.
Fresh news: ocean waves and skater culture will land in Florence for the 104th edition of Pitti Uomo. Invited as a guest designer, on June, the California-based creative Eli Russel Lennitz will display a tailor-made project for the fair through a collection of his eponymous brand ERL. The hopes are high, and we can feel the temperature rising as if we were in Palm Springs already!
THE GOLDEN STATE WON FASHION WITH ERL
Founded in 2018 and already a winner of notable prizes such as the Karl Lagerfeld Prize by LVMH in 2022, the fashion crowds got to know the Palm Springs-inspired flair of ERL thanks to the capsule collection titled California Couture (SS 2023) in collaboration with Dior by Kim Jones.
The MET Gala 2021 red carpet gave ERL a moment to shine thanks to the LA-based rapper Asap Rocky, who wore a multicoloured quilt next to his sweet half, Rihanna. Capturing the essence and nostalgia of the American Dream, the garment was eventually part of the exhibition In America: An Anthology of Fashion by the MET in New York City.
BRINGING THE WEST COAST TO MEDIEVAL FLORENCE
Eli Russell Lennitz is not only a fashion designer. Born in Venice Beach and with a background in Cinema, Fine Arts and Narrative Design, his eclectic soul perfectly embodies California’s multifaceted panorama: the only place where you can swim, ski, and hike, all on the same day, as locals like to say.
Shot by the brand’s Creative Director, all ERL’s campaigns feature a strong cinematic touch; everything is inspired by, conceived, produced and communicated in LA, the Universal Studios city. After all, who can blame him? Who can resist the charm of sunny beaches, rollerblades and the fashion bling of Miami Vice and Baywatch?
I certainly cannot. So here is a little suggestion from your favourite editorial desk: get back to listening to West Coast by Lana Del Ray and find your Californication tune just in time for the appearance of ERL at Pitti Uomo. While waiting, let’s keep it chill like California Dreamin’: we’ll surely be surprised by what awaits us in June.
“The California waves swelling high into the sky,” as the designer says, will “then crash down upon Florence.”
Giulia Piceni is an Arts Curating undergraduate student at Istituto Marangoni Firenze.