Bottega Veneta Asks ‘What Makes a Man?’ in New Short Film

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Luxury Italian label Bottega Veneta may have skipped out on Milan Digital Fashion Week, but Creative Director Daniel Lee has just released a new short film titled “Bottega Veneta: Men,” made in collaboration with photographer and filmmaker Tyrone Lebon. The eight-minute video features a high-profile ensemble of creative visionaries who span ages, backgrounds, and professions, and explores concepts such as masculinity and gender expression within a 21st century context.

The film showcases the label’s seasonless fashion worn by its various stars, who include rapper Octavian, actor Barry Keoghan, musician Neneh Cherry, and others. The artists dress in different silhouettes consisting of sharply tailored suits, classic trench coats, lime green Chelsea boots, turtlenecks, and cable-knit sweaters. Each cast member is featured in a one-on-one interview, answering the question, “what qualities make a man?”

“The real leading men are the ones who are vulnerable,” says Keoghan, who rose to prominence in films such as Dunkirk and The Killing of a Sacred Deer.

The film’s cinematography explores a level of intimacy associated with identity. As each artist discusses masculinity in relation to their personal beliefs, struggles, and upbringing, the camera zooms in and out on their body language, and highlights physical characteristics like facial hair, body tattoos, and piercings. Ballet dancer Roberto Bolle speaks in a combination of English and his native Italian. Above all, the short film aims to capture the humanity in these figures as they wear the clothes, instead of the clothes wearing them. Lee has flipped a fashion switch by exploring the nuances of his models, which breathes new life into the clothes.

Bottega Veneta: Men can be viewed at BottegaVeneta.com, and will be available to stream for free via Mubi from July 24 to August 6.


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