The talk in Milan this week has been about youth. The newly restaffed Camera Moda, the Italian fashion association, convened a press conference to address the need to nurture Milanese talent. (The average age of the new governing board members is well into AARP territory, and the conference was held at 8 a.m., an hour unbeloved by the young, but never mind.) Giorgio Armani donated the use of his Teatro to the up-and-comer Andrea Pompilio, who staged his show there. And Iceberg's Paolo Gerani used the occasion to offer an announcement of his own: He was turning over his men's collection to the 37-year-old Florentine Federico Curradi, who has been consulting on the collection since 2006. Gerani will continue as Iceberg's artistic director, overseeing the collection. Iceberg, he said, "has always been very close to emerging talent," mentioning the early-career layovers there by Marc Jacobs and Giambattista Valli. He hinted that a similar announcement would be coming for the label's womenswear before long.
Curradi, a veteran of Roberto Cavalli and Ermanno Scervino, said he based his inaugural show on "people who need to live in a big city, frantically and dynamically." In his hands, Iceberg took on an aerodynamic sleekness not much in evidence before. The collection did look younger, but more to the point, it betrayed an awareness of the dominant trends in menswear: a fetish for sports and sportswear, the mixing of technical and sartorial fabrics, and the elevation of casual dressing. Geometric, paneled sweatshirts and side-zip, tunic-style T-shirts paired with skinny, casual pants and slip-on mocs didn't reinvent the wheel, but they did spin it a bit faster than it has spun of late. That, cautiously, is a good sign. Currardi, who, according to a press release, lives in a house in the hills outside Florence, is now one of those people who need to live in a big city. Bring on the frantic dynamism.