To attend a nuno baltazar fashion show is to enter a universe of passions, infatuation, drama, happy endings and not-so-happy endings. it is, above all, to be swept away by his trademark and unmistakable refinement. for more than thirteen years, it has established its own place in the closets of the most elegant women in Portugal.
Though born in lisbon, january 1976, it was while growing up in porto that an inocent discovery triggered nuno’s interest in drawing. who could resist the elegance enclosed in the 50’s magazine collection found in a chest at his grandparents’ house? this naturally LED to his decision of, in 1994, enroling in citex, the renouned fashion school from porto. the decision proved to be the right one, as demonstrated by the several awards won, such as sangue novo 1996, porto moda 1996 and máxima magazine best new designer 1996 and 1997.
In 1999, after a short but nevertheless very successful track record, nuno baltazar starts the regular presentation of his collections. Firstly with paulo cravo, with whom he still remains a close friend, under the label cravo.baltazar. later, as nuno baltazar, in events such as portugal fashion and paris fashion week, before establishing himself as one of the leading events in modalisboa calendar.
Despite of getting inspiration for the runway from travels, cinema, opera and iconic celebrities such as amália rodrigues, marquesa de jácome correia and virginia woolf’s characters, nuno baltazar’s collections are always contemporary and translate the desires of real women. along with the couture sewing details, there is a common sense kind of design that is in tune with the needs of the clientele from different generations. there is a demand for both prêt-a-porter and the atelier made-to-measure creations.
Besides meaning real fashion, to bring up nuno baltazar’s name is to recall a language of femininity that, among many situations – plays, movies, concerts and red carpet events – dresses some of the most elegant celebrities in the country. to a list where carminho, mafalda arnauth, guida maria and ana rita clara are included, was recently added the conductor joana carneiro, as one of the women for which the designer creates exclusive designs, tailored to the needs of the baton of talent.
However, it would be unthinkable to close the list of the designer’s followers without mentioning catarina furtado, the onu embassador and the brightest star in portuguese tv. since 2001, he single-handedly develops the tv host’s IMAGE; she has now become a friend and the label’s front face. “I must have something in common with whom I work with. I cannot simply “wear something”. his character, his taste for the poetic and theatrical created a connection between us, right away during the first time i visited nuno in porto”, confessed catarina furtado, in the number 100 edition of vogue portugal.
Since 2004, the number 856 of the elegant boavista avenue in porto is the headquarters of the brand nuno baltaza, IN a three storey building that brings to mind THE EXCLUSIVE atmosphere of the maisons of the great couturiers. one can find there the ready-to-wear collections, accessories and footwear signed by the designer but and also books, candles and other lifestyle objects hand-picked by him. it is also the address where other partnerships are developed, like the acclaimed furniture and lighting brand baltazar . map maison-a-porter, designed in collaboration with the architect and business partner vítor almeida. it already debuted in paris, milan and london’s furniture fairs. other partnerships include industry’s “giants” such as nespresso and seat, the automotive brand.
One can expect the numerous honours, like the nominations for best designer at the golden globes 2007 and fashion tv awards 2010, that continuosly prove the talent of a young but established name in portuguese fashion. however, the ultimate homage does not have the shape of a trophy, it comes as an answer to the question “what are you wearing?” and the reply echoes in the lips of innumerable women as an exclamation: “NUNO BALTAZAR”.
by Manuel Arnaut