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Carla Sozzani Tapped for Dover Street Market’s Imminent Paris Opening: Sources

EXPERIENCE MATTERS: Dover Street Market, gearing up to open its long-awaited Paris branch in March, has tapped Italian retail legend Carla Sozzani for an assist, WWD has learned.

Sozzani attended Dover Street Market on select buying appointments during the June and July designer markets in Milan and Paris, leveraging her extensive industry relationships and keen fashion instincts, according to sources.

It is understood that Adrian Joffe, chief executive officer of Dover Street Market, plans to collaborate with an array of guest talents, including buyers, as he and Rei Kawakubo map out a new concept for Dover Street Market at 35-37 Rue des Francs-Bourgeois in the Marais district.

The grand 17th-century town house at that address has been operating for two years as a cultural center, hosting a freewheeling mix of exhibitions, happenings, musical performances, brand installations and retail spaces.

Joffe and Kawakubo are guarding details about the Paris outpost, which will coincide with Dover Street Market’s 20th anniversary, but have hinted they are recontextualizing the retail emporium.

“It’ll be a new kind of Dover Street,” Joffe told WWD last April. Paris will become the seventh Dover Street Market after London, Los Angeles, New York, Singapore, Beijing and Tokyo.

Sozzani is known as a pioneer in concept stores: She is the founder of 10 Corso Como in Milan, a destination that blends fashion, cuisine, art, music, design and lifestyle. She is no longer affiliated with the retailer, now controlled by Tiziana Fausti.

Carla Sozzani

Carla Sozzani at the Azzedine Alaïa foundation in Paris.

Stéphane Feugère

Sozzani and Kawakubo go back a long way: They opened a 10 Corso Como-Comme des Garçons store in Tokyo as a partnership in 2002 (it has since closed).

The Italian entrepreneur is also president of the Azzedine Alaïa Foundation, which exhibits the work of the late Tunisian couturier and art from his personal collection, and president of Fondazione Sozzani, founded in 2016 with the goal to promote the arts and culture with exhibits and events.

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