Daniel Lee named new creative director of Bottega Veneta
The announcement comes two days after Bottega Veneta dismissed its long-standing designer Tomas Maier.
The largely unknown Lee will take command on July 1, 2018. However, the appointment of the somewhat obscure Lee does follow a recent Kering pattern. The giant French group appointed Alessandro Michele from the internal design team of Gucci three years ago, igniting a period of explosive growth for that Florentine house.
Though Kering in a press release called Lee “an experienced designer,” he is still only 32. He will join Bottega Veneta from Kering’s rival group LVMH, where he was most recently Director of Ready-to-Wear at Céline. British-born, Lee is a graduate of the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. Before joining Céline in 2012, he worked at Maison Margiela, Balenciaga and Donna Karan.
“I’m both honored and excited to continue the legacy that has been created at Bottega Veneta over the last five decades. Maintaining the ingrained codes of the House, craftsmanship, quality and sophistication, I look forward to evolving what has gone before, while contributing a new perspective and modernity,” said Lee in a release.
As reported, Kering fired Maier on Wednesday after 16 years at the helm of the Venetian luxury marque.
Commenting on the arrival of Lee, François-Henri Pinault, the CEO of Kering and member of the family that controls the group, said: " I am very pleased to welcome Daniel Lee to Kering as Creative Director of Bottega Veneta. The singularity of his vision inspired by a very personal creative approach convinced me that he was best able to open a new chapter in the history of the House. His work is characterized by great rigor, a mastery of studio expertise, a true passion for materials and an energy that I cannot wait to see take shape at Bottega Veneta.”
The nomination marks the first major executive move of Claus Dietrich Lahrs, CEO of Bottega Veneta, though the choice of Lee has certainly been made by Pinault, who takes pride in appointing the senior creative directors in all the brands within the group.
“Daniel Lee has a deep understanding of the House’s current challenges both in terms of creation and development. He will bring to Bottega Veneta a new and distinctive creative language that will continue building the House's success based on the ambitious foundations already developed over recent years,” said Lahrs.
Kering clearly views the choice of Lee as further proof of their recent practice of placing “bold and daring creativity at the center of its strategy,” as they argued in the release.
Beside BV and Gucci, Kering also controls Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen and Brioni among its stable of luxury marques. In 2017 it scored annual revenues of 10.9 billion euros, employing 29,000 people worldwide.
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