amber valletta and anthony vaccarello on their autumn/winter 15 campaign

As the new campaign by ​Inez and Vinoodh is revealed, we speak exclusively to supermodel Amber Valletta and designer Anthony Vaccarello about the collaboration.

by Stuart Brumfitt
16 June 2015, 9:30am

She is an actress, environmentalist and model who became a supermodel during the 90s, when her campaigns for Calvin Klein, Armani, Gucci, Prada and Versace, along with her 13 Vogue covers (second only to Claudia Schiffer's 16) made her a household name. He is the young Belgian designer whose sexy, fun and modern aesthetic caught the eye of Donatella Versace, who saw in him the natural ability to navigate the codes of Versace's rebellious little sister line Versus, enlisting him for a capsule collection in late 2013 and making him creative director earlier this year.

Having taken the helm at Versus, Anthony Vaccarello continues to design for his eponymous label and for autumn/winter 16 has enlisted the dynamic 90s super Amber Valletta to be the face of the brand. As Valletta appears in the dramatic and powerful campaign lensed by Inez and Vinoodh, we catch up with both Valletta and Vaccarello to discuss collaboration, Versace in the 90s and the what's in store for the future...

Anthony Vaccarello

What's your first memory of seeing Amber in a campaign or editorial?
It was an editorial she did with Juergen Teller in 1996. Very raw, very Juergen, but extremely precise and simple. It's so strong, it's still in my mind now. Amber was stunning... so modern and still in my references for every collections. It's funny because Dick Page who did the make-up for my autumn/winter 15 campaign, also worked on that Juergen story.

Why is she the Vaccarello woman right now?
She always was in a way, I just hadn't had the chance to work with her! She is the Vaccarello woman right now because she is a woman, not a girl. She is more than a model, she is iconic. As I used stars in that collection (in pattern, in embroidery, in prints) I thought she would be perfect for it. She twisted it in her own way. That makes the whole difference.

Can you describe Amber in three words?
Iconic, mysterious, true.

How does she rate in your favourite all-time models?
She is in my all-time top 5 models. She is part of the generation of models who made me do this job. She was amongst Kate, Shalom, Christy; she represents the best in the minimal 90's.

There's a masculinity to the pose and picture - is that something you were trying to achieve?
Yes, totally. In the morning of the shoot we tried, with Inez and Vinoodh, to do something more dramatic, but it was just for fun, just to try it because we had the chance to work with Amber. But then we knew we wanted to capture Amber as she was - without any distraction. I wanted to show something different in that campaign. I wanted to say that you don't need to be super sexy all the time. It's time for me to express through those images my clothes can speak to a lot of women. With the same collection, you can be sexy in a party dress or as a garçonne with a pantsuit or a punk with a kilt and classic shirt. Everyone can find something and make it their own. It's a matter of style: how the woman who picks my clothes is behaving.

Amber Valletta

Who shot the campaign? Have you worked with them before? If so, can you tell us about your relationship?
Inez and Vinoodh - I have worked with them many times. We have a good relationship as we have spent much time working together over the years. There is a mutual trust and respect between us which comes through in the pictures we do together. The pictures feel more intimate.

What's your take on Anthony Vaccarello, the label?
The brand Anthony Vaccarello is modern, sexy, strong and thoughtful.

What do you think of Anthony Vaccarello, the man? Can you describe him in three words?
Humble, intelligent and cool.

You were a real Versace girl in the 90s - does it feel like good synergy working with Anthony, since he's now also at Versus?
Definitely working with Anthony feels very comfortable and easy. He has worked with my Versace family so he does feel familiar. We had a connection instantly!

How is modelling for you now that you're an actress? Does it feel different, for the better or worse?
I feel fortunate that I am able to have two great careers. They don't feel that different since I've always used acting in my modeling to create characters. I love both!

I love that there's a masculinity to the styling and pose. What's your take on the image?
Thank you! I think the images are fresh and strong. They're very modern.

What's coming up for you?
I have a new TV show for ABC starting in the autumn called Blood and Oil. Stayed tuned for more...

fashion interviews
autumn/winter 15
inez and vinoodh
amber valletta
anthony vaccarello