Miuccia Prada on the definition of ugly, good taste and contradictions

In an interview to T, The New York Times Style Magazine, Miuccia Prada, co-owner and Creative Director of Prada shares her insights on many sensitive topics.

On the power of ugly: “Ugly is attractive, ugly is exciting. The investigation of ugliness is, to me, more interesting than the bourgeois idea of beauty. It touches the bad and the dirty side of people. In other fields of art it is common: in painting and in movies, it was so common to see ugliness. It was not used in fashion and I was very much criticized for inventing the trashy and the ugly.”

On fashion as self-invention: “You can change your mind and change your clothes. . . . It is one of the first levels of emancipation.”

On the democratization of fashion: “There is an understanding that, when I do a show, no one will tell me what to do. Once, at the beginning of my career, I tried to listen to others and it was all wrong. I have to do what I think is right, and now everybody is happy that it is like this.”

On living within her own contradictions: “When I started, fashion was the worst place to be if you were a leftist feminist. I suppose I felt guilty not to be doing something more important, more political. So in a way I am trying to use the company for these other activities. I am trying to work out which images of the female I want to analyze. I’m not really interested in clothes or style.”

On her work as a self-portrait: “Yes. It comes from me. It’s my soul. It’s my life. My work and my life are more or less the same thing, and I never consider that the work is something different.”

Miuccia Prada