Riccardo Tisci (b. 1974 or 1975) is an Italian fashion designer. He graduated from London's Central Saint Martins Academy, and in 2005 was named creative director for Givenchy womenswear, haute couture and in May 2008 he was named as menswear and accesories designer of the Givenchy men's division.
Tisci was born in Taranto, Italy. The city of Taranto is said to be mythologically tied with mermaids and marines, which often influences Tisci in his collections for both Givenchy ready-to-wear and haute couture.
After graduating from London's Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in 1999, Tisci worked for a succession of companies such as Puma and Coccapani before signing a three-year contract with Ruffo Research, which launched the careers of a plethora of fashion designers, such as Sophia Kokosalaki.
Once his contract had expired in July of 2004, Tisci began to work on his own collection, which he exhibited for Milan Fall 2005/2006 Fashion week. Shortly after, he was appointed by Givenchy as the creative director and made the following statement "I am delighted to join Givenchy and very proud to be able to bring my vision to this prestigious French haute couture house, whose history inspires me."
On February 28th 2005, Riccardo Tisci was officially appointed as the creative director of the Haute Couture, ready-to-wear and accessories lines for Givenchy.
Givenchy boss Marco Gobbetti, spoke of Tisci's appointment as being a "perfect fit for us". Gobbetti adds, "He [Tisci] has an elegance that is very modern, very contemporary and romantic at the same time".
Unlike the various designers before him who succeeded Mr. Givenchy himself, Tisci has encountered great success, both critically and financially. Especially in the realm of Haute Couture. Riccardo Tisci's runway presentations are highly stylized in terms of architecture and space.
In 2011, Riccardo Tisci was appointed as new Creative Director for Dior, after John Galliano was fired by Dior for his anti-Semitic statements that caused extensive controversy in the fashion world.
His apparent fascination with gothic touches (dark, languid dresses on sickly models for fall couture) and space-age minimalism (one ready-to-wear show featured white-clad models drifting aimlessly around a sterile-white sphere) have drawn new attention to the Givenchy brand. Reviews and output so far have been mixed and inconsistent, but many, including influential fashion critics (such as Cathy Horyn of the New York Times and Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune) have homed in on Tisci's conceptual leanings, as well as his future potential for revitalizing the Givenchy brand and infusing it with his precision and imagination.