10 Words of Wisdom from Miuccia Prada

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Miuccia Prada Met Gala 2018 Heavenly Bodies
Miuccia Prada at Heavenly Bodies: Fashion & The Catholic Imagination Costume Institute GalaPhoto by Rebecca Smeyne/Getty Images

As she prepares to accept the outstanding achievement award at The Fashion Awards 2018, we present 10 quotes of note from the convention-defying designer

There are few designers working today who elicit the kind of emphatic praise bestowed on Miuccia Prada, for good reason – her clothing, at once thoughtful and provocative, unconventional and beautiful, has resolutely set the path of 21st-century fashion. Her resonance, at both namesakes Prada and Miu Miu, comes from her ability to challenge the traditions of luxury and beauty, making the banal covetable and the ugly chic (in the process, she has become something of fashion’s soothsayer, predicting what men and women want to wear, before they know themselves). But more, she has made Prada into cultural force, entwining fashion, politics and art at once – Fondazione Prada, the vast OMA-designed complex in Milan she opened with husband Patrizio Bertelli in 2015, is now one of the leading modern art institutions in the world. 

This evening, she will receive the award for outstanding achievement at The Fashion Awards 2018 in partnership with Swarovski, selected for her pioneering work across disciplines. Ahead of the ceremony, and an after party in her honour hosted by Dazed co-founder Jefferson Hack and LOVE’s editor-in-chief Katie Grand, Miuccia Prada’s words of wisdom, selected from the AnOther Magazine archives. 

  1. “When I do ugly things it’s completely intentional. In the end, if you always do only what you like, it becomes boring, you don’t grow, you don’t learn anything new” – AnOther Magazine, S/S17
  2. “When everything has been done, sometimes the only possibility left to be different is the idea of the traditional and the conservative” – AnOther Magazine, A/W03
  3. “Someone once asked me, ‘Why art? Why fashion?’ and I said, ‘Because they are my instruments.’ If I were a doctor, I would use the available science. They are instruments of knowledge used to make ideas available” – AnOther Magazine A/W08
  4. “Something that has become old fashioned is this obsession with youth, it’s boring! And the idea to dress only comfortably, what does it mean? Who cares? Things can also be complicated, as life is” – AnOther Magazine, A/W03
  5. “I think what counts in life are the same for all of us: fear, love, death, sickness, joy, childhood, friendship, probably hate, that is upsetting, I don’t feel it so much. These are the things that have moved humanity forever, these are the things that really count” – AnOther Magazine, S/S17
  6. “When they ask me how I can be elegant, well dressed – I say study! (Laughs) Study fashion, study movies, study art and after that study yourself” – AnOther Magazine A/W08
  7. “Women have more facets. We are so much more complex. We are lovers, mothers, workers… We have to be beautiful...” – The Powerful and Tender Matriarchy of Miuccia Prada, anothermag.com
  8. “Then [when she was 15] I started really having fun. I was out, out, out. I remember turning my skirt into a mini-skirt on the stairs before going to school and taking it down again before coming back” – AnOther Magazine, S/S17
  9. “It’s not necessarily about being rich or expensive but you don’t have to be banal; dressing and elegance is more complicated than that. You have to try and elevate the level of dressing in some way, make it more thought out” – AnOther Magazine, A/W04
  10. “I used to wear Saint Laurent all the time. I always liked the bourgeoisie. I was intrigued by the bourgeoisie. But mainly that was the culture of the 60s and 70s, Antonioni, Godard, Buñuel. Now it’s a subject that’s not so relevant anymore” – AnOther Magazine, S/S17