From Mugler to Diesel – Nicola Formichetti Makes Moves

Diesel founder Renzo Rosso, left, gives a thumbs-up alongside the brand's newly appointed artistic director, Nicola Formichetti. (Diesel)

Diesel founder Renzo Rosso, left, gives a thumbs-up alongside the brand’s newly appointed artistic director, Nicola Formichetti. (Diesel)

Two days after news broke that Nicola Formichetti was out as creative director at the French fashion house founded by Thierry Mugler, Italy’s denim-based Diesel brand announced Thursday that it had tapped the social-media-savvy stylist and designer — the one who notoriously styled Lady Gaga in a Franc Fernandez dress made of raw meat — to serve as artistic director.

According to Diesel’s announcement, Formichetti will “oversee all creative activities of the Diesel main line, including the areas of product, communications and interior design,” as well as spearhead a project dubbed “Diesel Reboot,” for which he plans “to mobilize an emerging global creative community to collaborate with him” via a dedicated tumblr page.

Rumors of where Formichetti would go next had been swirling since reports surfaced Tuesday that he and Mugler had parted ways “by mutual agreement,” and several hours ago he fittingly took to his Twitter account to confirm where he’d landed, posting in part: “Buongiorno!! The rumors are true. I’m in at @Diesel …” with a hyperlink link to the official announcement.

Formichetti, who spent 2 1/2 years with the Thierry Mugler brand (one of the first things he did was shorten the label’s name to “Mugler”), has already assumed his new role, according to a Diesel representative. That means he will have a hand in the fall-winter 2013 advertising and branding campaign now underway, but his impact on actual product won’t be evident until the fall-winter 2014 collections.

Diesel’s representative also said Formichetti’s position as artistic director position is a newly created role, and emphasized that he will be working with Diesel’s existing creative team — including Norwegian designer Andreas Melbostad, hired in October 2012 to serve as creative director of the Diesel Black Gold label and who made his ready-to-wear runway debut during New York Fashion Week in February. – Adam Tschorn, LA Times


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