The incomparable Donatella Versace has found strength from adversity to revive the family brand while still honoring her brother Gianni’s legacy, but in her own voice.
By HASSAN AL-SALEH
Photography ZEB DAEMEN
Styling GABRIELLA NORBERG
Versace is a name that will forever live in infamy. A name that tells a traumatic tale of a visionary man, of glamor, glory, tragedy, heartbreak, addiction, and rebirth.
They say time heals all wounds. It has been more than two decades since the assassination of legendary fashion designer Gianni Versace, and now his sister Donatella, who is at the helm of one of the most renowned fashion houses, has come into her own to preserve the family legacy and bring the brand into the 21st century.
Donatella was Gianni’s best friend, muse, confidante, and accomplice. Soon after his untimely death in July of 1997, she assumed creative control of Versace. In addition to shouldering this mammoth responsibility in the aftermath of Gianni’s murder, she was tormented by the loss of her beloved brother and was fighting demons of her own to mask her pain.
While not all great stories have a happy ending, Donatella seems to have found her own. She is more comfortable in her own skin than ever before.
“I discovered that I’m stronger than I thought, that I’m a fighter. I alsounderstand now that I have been my own worst enemy for a long time.”