The promotion of Alessandro Michele in January 2015 to the role of creative director at Gucci has been seen as a major pivot point for the luxury Italian fashion house — with his influence changing everything from catwalk to timepieces and the way they are presented to an increasingly digital-obsessed customer base.
The Gucci watch collections presented at Baselworld were a dramatic departure from previous years and nobody could say that the Marché des Merveilles models were in any way playing it safe.
The striking designs, which borrow heavily from Gucci fashion motifs including snakes, tigers and bees, have been central to a dramatic ramp-up in social media, driven by Mr Michele.
The company recent launched a project on Instagram using the hashtag #TFWGucci (That Feeling When Gucci) in which artists from around the world are encouraged to collaborate with Gucci by creating memes featuring timepieces from different lines, including the Le Marché des Merveilles collection of watches.
An early example was from LA-based artist Amanda Charchian (@amanda_charchian) who creates captivating, sensual imagery, and Olaf Breuning, from NYC and Zürich, known for his playful work. Others hail from different corners of the globe, including Less, a photographer from Korea, and Christto & Andrew, an artist duo from Qatar.
All the memes can be found at a microsite: www.gucci.com/tfwgucci.
By the end of March, there were 30 memes collated on the Gucci microsite and published across social media.
Analysis by social media consultancy Dash Hudson on March 22 this year found that the memes had reached over 120 million people and been ‘liked’ almost 2 million times.