Gianluca Piroli was born in Parma in 1965. After studying at the Paolo Toschi art school, he devoted himself to a career in the creative industry. He was largely driven by the quest to fashion a bespoke life for himself, avoiding the stereotypes of his generation.
When he had just turned twenty, he started solving problems for people who were only able to visualize things in two dimensions. It was 1985 and 3D programmes were not available yet. The many people who used his services were astonished by his ability to envisage how things would be in three dimensions. On this wave of success, he started working with Lee, Best Company, Wrangler, Fiorucci, Midwest, By American and many others. Following this, he produced his first window display for Gianfranco FerrÈ's leather line, which led to other similar projects for Missoni, Levi's, Diesel and Replay. At just twenty-three years of age his arrival at the top was confirmed by Claudio Buziol, who bound him to Fashion Box with an exclusive deal. He was entrusted with the creation of items for the brands REPLAY (men and women), REPLAY and Sons, RIVET and RETOUR, ranging from window display items to bags, belts, packaging and everything that goes alongside the products themselves. During his time there, the foundations were laid for the country style that would truly come into its own in the Replay Country Stores - the chain of shops developed in that period - as well as the quite unique ageing effects and the ongoing search for things that are ever more different and completely unparalleled.
At the age of twenty-nine, after six years at Replay, Gianluca decided to make another change. Having founded Acme Sign two years earlier, he now opened Man Made, a company which picked up where he had left off with Caledonia Island - his first company which opened in 1985 - by producing "alternative" advertising materials for displays. He moved to Vignola, a town famous for its cherries, and married Cristina, his current partner and the mother of his wonderful son. He signed a deal with Eurocormar and worked on the creative direction of the brands Cotton Belt, Spitfire, British Khaki and Second Hand. The fourth of these names proved to be the starting point for his next project. His work was noticed by Nicola Martini, the owner of Mason's, and he was offered consultancy work for the brand, which had lost some of its prestige at the time. In 1998 he took on this new challenge and in just a few years Mason's regained its lost ground and was back among the leading brands on the market.†
Over the years, Gianluca Piroli's style has become ever more unmistakeable and inimitable: the apparent imperfection is in actual fact a perfectly organized ensemble; confusion, which seems to be a common factor in every piece of work he does, is really something more and succeeds in making everything he touches unique.
After Mason's, who have shown great enthusiasm for his "perfect confusion" and his huge commitment to good causes (they are always referred to in his work, whether it be an appeal for the protection of endangered species, human rights or the enormously fragile natural world), he was sought out by Breach, a growing label which he has now been working with for a couple of years, and more recently by Alpha Delta Phi and Italia Independent, Lapo Elkann's famous brand.
The prizes he has received over the years include the "Display International" awards won with the Napapijri display, in both the DESIGN and DURABLE categories. He also earned a special mention for his work on a project for SUNDEK.
His work has been published in a number of books:
WORLD'S BEST CREATIVE P.O.P. MATERIAL - VOLUMES 1, 2 and 3
BROCHURE PARADE - VOLUME 2