Sabato De Sarno, the creative director of Gucci, has a keen eye for exploring artistic, aesthetic and cultural references in his visual identity. His latest project, Gucci Prospettive 2: Ancora Milano, is a book that celebrates the diverse and rich expressions of Milanese design. The book is curated by Paola Antonelli, a renowned architect and design curator who lives in New York but was born and raised in Milan.

Crowd in front of Bar Basso during Salone del Mobile © Maurizio Stocchetto

The book showcases the various facets and dimensions of Milanese design, from its historical roots to its contemporary innovations. It features a mix of buildings, spaces and objects that reflect the city’s dedication to design, as well as the people who created them. Antonelli explains that the book is inspired by the concept of “friction and wear and tear, of flashes of brutalism contrasting with visions of commercial, business and industrial refinement”. The book also explores the clichés of bourgeois elegance, but without ignoring the more complex and radical nuances that define the essence of Milan.

Via Bartolomeo D’Alviano, residential building, Milano, 2019 © Fabio Natta, Elvira Pavesi

Gatto Verde Reportage, Milano, 16.11.2023 © Francesco Saverio Tani

The book is a companion to De Sarno’s first show of the Gucci Ancora Fall/Winter 2024 men’s collection, which will be held soon. The collection and the book are both inspired by the city of Milan, which De Sarno and Antonelli regard as the cradle of design systems. The book illustrates how the city’s design identity is shaped by the layered and dynamic interactions between physical spaces, objects and people.