ATXV Spring 2023 Ready-to-Wear Collection


There’s no doubting that Antonio Tarantini can do sexy—he worked alongside Domenico Dolce, John Galliano at Dior, and Donatella Versace—but he chose not to when he launched his own line in 2020. His focus is still on the human form, but his explorations are sensual and nuanced. Not only is Tarantini pushing against the borders of gender, he’s also exploring the contradictions within himself; this season he focused on his own fragility, something he’s been afraid to expose, he ventures, perhaps because “my father was a policeman and he was teaching me to be just strong; maybe this is why I decided to design women’s clothes, to express my fragility, my femininity. But now I feel really complete and with this collection I say, ‘Let’s show who you are.’”

Tarantini is on trend. Shirting is prevalent for spring 2023 and he plays with it in ingenious ways, using the placket to form curved seams and as straps framing exposed skin, or unbuttoned and attached in back to create a different shape. ATXV has been a jersey-focused line until now; the designer’s introduction of poplin (often mixed with jersey) is a way of expanding the line and showing his prowess with different materials. The fabric that looks like mesh is actually cotton lace.

In his previous collections Tarantini eschewed surface decorations and worked with draping, cut and layering to create patterns. This season asymmetric and criss-cross bras, visible through garments, are used to create abstract shapes on the skin. See his whisper-light and draped black slip dress paired with one of those underpinnings. Decorative, but not in a surface way, is a superlative handmade harness made of knotted “strings” of padded tubular georgette woven with thick metal chain and beads. The tank it’s worn over is also out of the ordinary, being constructed, by hand, of thread and the thinnest of metal chains.

Tarantini’s early collections had more off-duty-dancer and goddess touches; for spring he’s downplayed those aspects of his work and played up the “cut-outs” (some of these are created by layering rather than actually eliminating fabric) as others are taking them up. Maybe they’ll make a comeback for fall. In any case, this collection is a step forward for the designer in terms of materials, craftsmanship, and confidence. It is also another demonstration in Milan this week (see Bottega Veneta) of the benefits of experience.



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