Empire of the Griffin

Reed’s Prince of Fashion Makes a Splash at the Portland Art Museum


Emilio Pucci MA ’37

You may associate Reedies with conspicuous non-consumption, yet we have cut a distinctive swath in the fashion world, both high and low, and none more so than with Emilio Pucci MA ’37, the legendary fascist turned fashion designer who led a life of international intrigue culminating in a dramatic escape from Nazi captors. His original designs are included in the exhibition Italian Style: Fashion Since 1945 showing at the Portland Art Museum through May 3, 2015.

Italian Style documents Italy’s dramatic transition from post-war devastation to burgeoning industry. Sumptuous displays include more than 100 ensembles and accessories created by leading Italian fashion houses, including Pucci, Valentino, Gucci, Missoni, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Fendi, Prada, and Versace. As Emilio Pucci propelled Reed into the world of alpine sport as founder of the college ski team, his breathtaking designs propelled Italian fashion onto the world stage. 

For its presentation in Portland, the only West Coast venue, the museum has organized a variety of programs for the general public, as well as a private tour for alumni led by docent Nancy Johannsen Morrice ’78. In addition, current Reed students are eligible for a $5 discount (show your ID at the box office). Reed alumni, staff, and faculty are eligible for a $5 discount by using the online code REED when purchasing a ticket (timed-entrance reservations required, except on Friday nights when general admission is $5 for all).

If you haven’t had your fill of high style after seeing the glamorous display at the museum, drop by Reed’s Hauser Library to see Emilio Pucci: Fashion Impressario, curated by Gay Walker ‘69, special collections librarian, in the flat cases through April 15. Also, you may listen to a talk that Pucci gave on campus in 1962, in which he credits his MA, and “many other things” learned at Reed, as the basis for the formation of his distinguished career. Pucci goes on to define fashion in contrast to the dictionary definition of vulgarity, proposing that it is “a battle for taste, refinement, in order to make living more pleasant.” 

Alumni Board Nominations


For 3 year terms beginning July 1, 2015:

Jinyoung Park ’11, linguistics, Louisiana
Jenn Hubbs ’06, chemistry, Florida
Jeremy Stone ’99, anthopology, British Columbia
Darlene Pasieczny ’01, art history, Oregon
Michael Jacobs ’04, philosophy, New York

Holiday Party



More than 200 Reedies, family, and friends attended the Alumni Holiday Party in December, which featured the swinging jazz standards of Rebecca Kilgore, the hallowed Boar’s Head Procession, and decorations in the theme of “My Favorite Things” (including brown-paper packages tied up with string, of course).