Nicola Indelicato on More Self Love

Artist Nicola Indelicato

Words Tom Czibolya

Every crisis needs the perfect outfit. This summer, Milan based designer Nicola Indelicato shows us how to cover your mouth and nose in a fashionable and sexy way… and what else to wear. Have fun looking through his Lookbook and reading our little conversation with him.

How are you?

Quite well, thank you! 

How are you spending your days currently?

Since Corona my job is finally running in a normal rhythm again, so I can start with the production for F/W21.

What did you do just before you sat down for this interview?

I’ve posted a photo of my last shooting on IG, which I took last Friday. 

The unavoidable question: how has the current situation influenced you and your business? Or better yet, how much did it inspire your work – your latest collection features face masks alongside the more „standard“ items like underwear, shirts, etc.?

I’m lucky to live in the studio where I work. During the two months of lockdown I have always worked and as a craftsman I have already drawn and realized all the prototypes of my new SS21 collection. I don’t know why, but during this time, when I had no contact with other human bodies, I was nevertheless extremely inspired – just by the desire, by the very naughty INDELICATO way of thinking about it. By the way, all my pieces are just fabrics without a body, only the body brings my work to life. Last year in Milan I met a young man who has a mask label and we decided to work together. It was June 2019 and nobody could have imagined how essential these masks would be for our health today.

Tell us a little more about yourself – who exactly is Nicola Indelicato?

My name is Nicola Indelicato and I transformed my name into my label, my fantasy and my world. I studied at an international design school in Florence. During these years I have worked with various luxury brands and a few years ago I decided to create my own label, driven by a need to tell something that we can finally experience today through my clothes. If I had to describe myself with one word, I would choose the word sponge. I absorb, handle and translate everything I discover and live every day INDELICATELY! (Not delicate is the meaning of my surname.) 

There is a very explicit, very sexual, very “adults only“ aspect to your designs and collections. One of the slogans featured in your latest collection is “I just want to make you happy and your dick hard“. How much of an inspiration is porn / fetish / queer art for you as a designer?

As said before my approach is related to what we all experience. The sexual aspect of my work is clearly a topic that we all experience every day, especially in the virtual context. Only I have the courage to show all this and make it fashionable. Everything I do, even the most explicit things, are not vulgar because the sexuality that I deal with is a natural thing but it is seen as a dirty thing by a part of society thanks to the religious education that many of us have had and that often describe intimacy as a dirty thing.

Anyway, I have always been attracted by what you were not allowed to do or to say. Only by addressing and reinterpreting these things we will be able to de-ideologize the prejudices.

What else are you influenced by?

Being Italian and being a craftsman I have always been fascinated by tradition and the art of cutting. As a young designer, I believe that you have to deal with the past to get contemporary. I have a large pool of patterns for men’s clothing, from old Florentine tailors, that I use for my ideas.

Where do you see yourself and your label 5 years from now? Any big goals you still want to achieve – or maybe even THE one big perfect dream for the future?

I have grown both as a designer and as a person over the last 5 years and now I understand more and more what I am doing and what I’m gonna do with my brand. Every season I work on improving what I do, from product to communication. Being a craftsman, I now want to focus more on e-commerce to be closer to my customers, just like the tailor used to be.

What are the first 3 things you will do when the whole Corona situation is „over“?

I will definitely go back to Florence where I was born and raised, to embrace my family who I have not seen since January (I live in Milan). I don’t think the other two are so important!

Famous last words?

Today they reopen the gyms… and I woke up with a back pain.

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