Interview With Paul Marciano, GUESS co-founder
All Amercian brand GUESS, known for its sexy and youthful appeal has been responsible for some of the most iconic and recognisable campaigns since the late 80's and throughout the 90's.
From Claudia Schiffer and late model/controversial pop culture icon, Anna Nicole Smith to today's supermodels such as Gigi Hadid and Hailey Baldwin, Guess has always had the eye for spotting the "it" girls of the moment. In 2016 the brand launched Guess Originals, a highly sought after capsule featuring American rap artist, A$AP Rocky. The collaboration proved that Guess still continues to have a say in moulding youth culture.
GUESS has been responsible for some of the most iconic campaigns since the early 90's. What is it about these campaigns that make people take notice?
In 1982 the company began to do advertising campaigns and in 1985 the first distinguished images of the company in black and white appeared. We have never created campaigns about our product. We have created iconic and timeless images which no one will forget. All GUESS campaigns are shot to capture a beauty that transcends time and it has always been important to work with photographers who share the same goal. I have been privileged to work with talented artists like Daniela Federici, Wayne Maser, Herb Ritts, Dewey Nicks, Raphael Mazzucco, and Elle Von Unwerth who have contributed to over three magical decades of images from our brand.
How would you describe the Guess girl and boy today and what are they representing?
The GUESS brand & the GUESS Girl is sexy, young and adventurous. These core values are part of a unique and consistent identity that is our main successful asset. Our advertising campaigns, which I have personally supervised since the brand’s inception are a cornerstone of our image and will continue to be so for many years to come. Sexiness is one of our cornerstones and something our Guess Girls will always represent in a contemporary yet iconic way”. The “GUESS Girl” is someone who goes beyond physical beauty and who is able to create a timeless photograph. They need to be able to transmit the classic sensuality and femininity which is at the heart of our brand. This goes beyond any measurements or industry canons.
In 2016 GUESS Originals was launched. What was the idea behind the capsule ?
We really wanted to introduce a capsule that was authentic to the GUESS Heritage along with a strong advertising campaign featuring Hailey Baldwin who represents a modern icon today.
We wanted to bring back the 90’s logo-mania in fun and bold way, making a big statement in the stone-washed denim group using logo letter appliqué, archival embroidery patches and laser printing to update the modern aesthetic and lend a classic nod to the 90’s era varsity look. This capsule was a global statement in our stores, social media and advertising campaign and we were very satisfied with the customers and press response.
How does A$AP Rocky fit into the identity of GUESS?
The collaboration came together when Rocky’s team let us know he had a personal interest in collaborating with GUESS. Shortly after, he came to our Los Angeles headquarters, and we immediately connected, which is always important to me when bringing someone into the GUESS family. He had a clear vision of what he wanted to do and explained to us what GUESS meant to him growing up and to the hip hop community. Rocky wanted to revitalize that sentiment and create a curated collection inspired by classic GUESS pieces for the new generation to discover.
This will be the first time for GUESS to exhibit in Scandinavia and at CIFF. What are you hoping to gain from exhibiting at CIFF?
CIFF is the largest and most innovative fashion fair in Scandinavia and it represents an important step for our brand to be introduced as a lifestyle brand in the Northern Markets. In the past 2 years we have opened few stores across Scandinavia and we are convinced that this market promises a wealth of great opportunities. This fair will be a great moment for us to interact with buyers and key accounts to introduce them to the world of GUESS.
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