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Condé Nast and Suzy Menkes announce first speakers for 2020 conference

29 October 2019
OPENED BY HUMANITARIAN NATALIA VODIANOVA, SPEAKERS WILL INCLUDE CREATIVE DIRECTORS OF CHANEL’S LESAGE, CHLOÉ, HERMÈS, JIL SANDER, AS WELL AS DESIGNERS MANFRED THIERRY MUGLER, ANDREAS KRONTHALER OF VIVIENNE WESTWOOD, AND VETEMENTS CEO GURAM GVASALIA 

“The year 2020 marks 30 years of extraordinary social and economic change, after the fall of the Berlin Wall. I am proud to bring the 2020 Condé Nast Luxury Conference to Vienna, the heartland of Central and Eastern Europe where eight countries surround Austria’s borders. The area is rich in creativity and artistry, as well as being a dynamic fashion and luxury hub, and represents powerful opportunities for the global luxury industry.”
Suzy Menkes, Editor, Vogue International

Natalia Vodianova

Condé Nast today announced the first roster of speakers to appear at the sixth annual Condé Nast Luxury Conference taking place on 29 and 30 April 2020 in Austria’s capital, Vienna, and in partnership with Guaranty Trust Bank. The event will bring together a range of luxury and business leaders, thinkers and entrepreneurs from around the world to discuss and debate the power of luxury with curator and host Suzy Menkes, Editor, Vogue International. 

Taking place 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and with the theme “Gateways to Luxury,” the on-stage discussion will explore how economic development in the Central and Eastern European region is creating opportunities for the global luxury and fashion industry, and the CEE area’s role as a source of creativity and a dynamic consumer hub. Themes will also include the crucial global topics of sustainability, inclusivity, the emergence of new sources of creativity and the power of data.

In a rare speaking appearance, designer Manfred Thierry Mugler, whose dynamic and body-enhancing silhouettes defined an era of “power women,” will share insights into how he is riding a new wave of pop culture, while renowned curator Thierry-Maxime Loriot will speak on the power of art and fashion. 

Creatives from some of luxury’s leading fashion houses will hone in on the unique qualities of artistry, craftsmanship and hand-made luxury – Lesage’s Hubert Barrère, Artistic Director of the jewel in Chanel’s Paraffection crown, will show that fashion is in the details and Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, Creative Director, Hermès, will discuss her stealth take on uber-luxury dressing.

Size inclusivity will be explored by Lynne Webber, CEO of Marina Rinaldi, celebrating 40 years in business, and visionary online retailer Patrick Herning of 11 Honoré.

Across two days, speakers will take to the stage for  discussions, keynote speeches and in-depth interviews.

Luke Meier and Lucie Meier, Creative Directors, Jil Sander

Austria’s own Andreas Kronthaler, Creative Director of Vivienne Westwood, will talk about his personal ties to Vienna. Linked to Switzerland, Germany, and Austria, Luke and Lucie Meier, the dynamic design couple reinvigorating the Jil Sander brand, will discuss their light-handed approach to Germanic Luxury. Vienna-born, Milan-based Arthur Arbesser will talk about his eponymous brand as well as his work for the Tod’s Group

Additionally, Guram Gvasalia, CEO, VETEMENTS GROUP will deliver business insights from the rapid success of his cult streetwear brand. Chloé’s President, Geoffroy de La Bourdonnaye and Creative Director Natacha Ramsay-Levi will be in conversation about how they are working together for today’s Chloé girl.

Noonoouri, created by Joerg Zuber

Joerg Zuber, creator of digital character and activist @Noonoouri, will give an insight into the brave new world of virtual influencers. 

Further speakers will include: Riccardo Sciutto, CEO, Sergio Rossi; Hélène Poulit-Duquesne, CEO, Boucheron; Simon Sebag Montefiore, Author; Lord Snowdon, Honorary Chairman, Christie’s; Thierry Dreyfus, Founder, Eyesight; Angelica Cheung, Editor-in-Chief, Vogue China; Christiane Arp, Editor-in-Chief, Vogue Germany; Greg Williams, Editor, WIRED Britain, Karina Dobrotvorskaya, Executive Director, Editorial Development, Condé Nast and Jo-Ann Strauss, Master of Ceremonies. 

Condé Nast’s ‘Gateway to Luxury’ Conference will take place at the Hofburg Palace Vienna on 29 and 30 April 2020. Further speakers will be announced in the coming weeks. 

Lead sponsor: Guaranty Trust Bank

City Partner: Vienna Tourist Board 

Event Sponsors include: Backhausen, Belvedere, Joerg Zuber Studio, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, McArthurGlen and Rêve de Rive