This Foundation is concerned with the exchange between the various types of visual media (art, fashion, architecture, design, photography, cinema), and through this the construction of an up-to-date fashion culture with its own analytical and representative tools, on a level comparable to contemporary culture. The Foundation has the task of autonomously promoting exhibitions and publishing projects, and of drawing attention to the most innovative artistic phenomena from which fashion takes its materials and for which fashion itself is increasingly often a reason for, and subject of, reflection and production. To succeed in uniting these different elements — culture, entertainment, ground-breaking research and the popularisation of artistic media — the Foundation adopts sophisticated strategies and different means (exhibitions, books, performances, installations, videos). While doing this, the Foundation must also maintain a vital and constant link with the economic realities of which it is originally an expression, and over the years consolidate its status as an institution in the field of contemporary culture. Pitti Immagine Discovery officially came into being on 9 April 1999. The challenge was to find a place in Florence where attention could be concentrated on the most stimulating research into contemporary media. In Spring 2002 Pitti Immagine and the Florence Center for Italian Fashion transformed the project into the Pitti Immagine Discovery Foundation, with the aim of bringing greater consistency and institutional standing to the Group’s activities in the contemporary field. Alfredo Canessa is the Foundation’s president, Lapo Cianchi is the general secretary and Francesco Bonami is the artistic director, fashion curator Maria Luisa Frisa.
Lola (1893-1985). French dressmaker born in Belgium. She was called Leontine, but chose Lola as her working name. She set up on her own in Paris in 1937, after being discovered by Hermès. Her creativity played on a taste for high-quality craftsmanship, fabrics, jewelry, and hand-embroidery, fuelled by research trips to India, Greece, and Egypt. She worked up to the age of 87.