One of the most amazing opportunities my study abroad gave us was taking us on a tour of Gucci Garden in Florence. Gucci Garden a museum of artifacts that Gucci has made since its opening in 1921. Each room includes pieces of all kinds with history filled products and the walls are covered in hand painted Gucci inspired murals. Although I could go on and on about the amazing pieces I saw, from hand-made luggage from the 1920’s to a hand-made, crystal studded dress that took over 10,000 hours of labor to make.
Out of all the different things I got to see, the most impressive piece, in my opinion, was not a Gucci product. One of the rooms you had to pass through was covered in hand painted Gucci inspired murals, like most of the other rooms, but this style was completely different from all of the other rooms. It was wild and colorful, and keeping your eyes off of it was impossible. Our tour guide noticed how we all couldn’t stop looking at the walls and she told us that that room was painted by a young, new artist just about a year ago. The new artist had a love for Alessandro Michele’s, the creative director of Gucci, unique and spontaneous designs. In order to get Alessandro’s attention, the artist posted his Gucci pieces onto his Instagram for months and would always tag Gucci and Alessandro, and would also make a ton of hashtags in hopes to get Alessandro’s attention. After months of posting, someone in the Gucci office finally saw his work and showed it to Alessandro. Alessandro was so impressed that he flew him to Italy to meet with him and offered him to paint a whole room in Gucci Garden. Now the artist paints for Alessandro and Gucci designs, and also sells pieces to some of the wealthiest people in the world.
This story shows the power of social media. With just some tags and consistent hashtags, a novice artist was able to get the attention of arguably one of the most important people in the fashion industry. The only way this artist’s story was made possible was through his use un social media. Even ten years ago, this kind of attention was unimaginable. Although social media can seem to take away time and attention from our everyday lives, it has also opened doors to opportunities that were not feasible to most people. It has changed the way we can meet friends, buy products, and even find jobs. As long as people know when to put social media to the side, I think it is one of the most powerful tools we have access to today.