“Vedi Neapoli e poi muori” – see Naples and then die – no doubt about it what Goethe wanted to express here: a thrilling city and consummate location for KATHARINA HOVMAN. Our photographer Philine von Sell travelled with her team to Italy and found a gorgeous setting for our cheerfully colourful Summer Collection 2021 there.
TIP: PUT ON HEADPHONES to enjoy this LOOKBOOK ACOUSTICALLY as well:)
...We roam across this pulsing city and its narrow streets, preferably on foot, but we try using the tour bus, too. Everyone warns about the traffic, and things really do seem a bit chaotic on Naple’s roads. On the other hand, anyone who takes on the challenge quickly realises – it’s a cautious chaos. People are attentive towards each other here. Everything flows. Everybody’s relaxed. The times we hear the sound of what’s more like a shyly honking horn are few and far between.
A metro tunnel blazing with colour
Even the underground is a highlight. The #1 Line, the Metrò dell’arte, lets us forget that we’re standing on a draughty metro platform. Renowned sculptors, painters and photographers have created a subterranean art gallery. In the colours of our summer collection! Carlotta, nicknamed Carlo for short, merges with the art on the wall in her outfit – she wears KATHARINA HOVMAN with the self-confident casualness you encounter everywhere in this city. Carlo is a “natural” at this, we discovered her in Düsseldorf. No one would ever think this is the first time she’s standing in front of a camera. By the way, the Linea 1 goes directly to MADRE, a worthwhile destination for fans of contemporary art.
On our second day lovely Priscilla enhances our team. A Roman by birth who has made Argentina her home, she’s a committed woman on a wide variety of fronts. As actress she basks in the footlights not only on theatre stages: one of her acclaimed projects is theatre in prisons. Culture for everyone, no exceptions.
Where colours tell stories
Santa Chiara, the famous church in the city’s old town – the cloister, one of the most beautiful in Campania. And there they are again: the colours! Benches and columns with impressively lovely tilework. Hand-painted. Typical for this region – our eyes can’t get enough of them. Whose aura has more intensity? Carlo and Priscilla’s in the magnificent hues their outfits display, or the benches in the cloister that tell us their stories and invite us to enjoy the cooling silence?
Today, on Day 2, I get Maili in front of my camera, too. Maili comes from Strasbourg and is our hair & make-up artist. She’s already done lots of work for the shows on the truly big-time Parisian catwalks, for instance Lagerfeld and the like. She is simply the best.
PORT & POMPEJI
The port of Naples lies directly outside the old town. The destination for everyone who wants to leave the city by boat. Here is where the SNAV ferries set sail for Capri or Ischia.
And here is where Eleonara, Ele for short, joins up with us. The actress has also made the trip from Rome to Naples and, like all of us, she too is going to enjoy a heretofore unknown pleasure. In September 2020 Pompeii – international tourist mecca, the most frequently visited archaeological site in the world – was deserted, not a soul in sight. We experience this magical place at the foot of Mount Vesuvius in a very special way.
Life on the doorstep
What an atmosphere! And how friendly the people are here! They clap and applaud us, they smile at us, they even invite Carlo and Priscilla into their homes to change clothes. Sniff, look, listen – we experience the Italian way of life with all our senses. The sidewalk is a piece of this “habitat”, a living room on the pavement. How lively life can be, after all! Here in the alleyways you sense the way this city’s pulse beats.
What you equally sense at some point after several kilometres on the rough-hewn cobblestones are your feet. The streets of Naples aren’t made for high heels or pumps. Carlo and Priscilla were pretty glad to have their flat mules from Espadrij – soft and supple. And comfy, even on cobblestones.
Legendary and fancy – Toto Alley
Rione Sanità – one of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods. A much-frequented district with a sinister mafia past. The Camorra has human beings’ lives to answer for here. But the great Toto was born here as well, a hugely popular actor and one of the most famous men on the Italian cultural scene. Books stand on shelves out in public on Toto Alley, and artists, both men and women, have immortalised themselves here. A great deal has been restored with a sensitive touch. A neighbourhood programme, organised by the City of Naples – using culture against the Camorra. Wonderful, creatively designed spaces. Carlo and Priscilla fit into the scenery in their sunny yellow and tomato-red outfits as if we had it built especially for them. Except that when I photograph, there’s nothing contrived about it. I take backdrops and scenery the way they come. It’s lovely here just like it is. Naples is not – as many say – “run-down”. Naples has the patina that comes with age.
COSTIERA AMALFITANA – Wildly romantic
We drive around 40 km south by car. Our destination: the Amalfi Coast. Word has it that the most weddings in the whole world are celebrated here. A wildly romantic spot. Its most famous town: the former fishing village of Positano – today the pearl of the Amalfi Coast, a must for the WHO’S WHO, but the same goes for Instagrammers and bloggers. A town as if painted on canvas. Colourful houses huddle closely to the craggy slopes. Narrow streets, steep stairways. It’s enchanting here, and a little bit old-school decadent as well.
Barely four kilometres away lies the community of Praiano. Nicer, more relaxed. Less sophisticated, but not as much “commerce”, either. Praiano is a well-kept secret for all those who don’t want to live where everyone lives. The pace is more sedate here. And here too, a breathtaking vista across the sea, aromatic lemons for the famous limoncello liqueur, and the most scrumptious tomatoes in the world.
PHILINE’S TIPS FOR BELLA NAPOLI AND THE AMALFI COAST
B&B MORISANI GARDEN. If you want to stay in a central, quiet and romantic place in the old town, the best place to stay is with the fantastic host Gabriella.
"METRÒ DELL’ARTE – LINIE 1, TIP: You can also book guided tours for the Metrò dell’arte
MUSEO MADRE – Museum of Contemporary Art, Via Settembrini 79