He’s one of my favourite living designers so I’m happy to see him back. The reason I am so interested in fashion is due to Alexander McQueen and what John Galliano did at Dior. I think that his comeback was only a matter of time and, considering how close Anna Wintour is to Oscar de la Renta, his latest position comes as no surprise. It works out well for both parties, Galliano is welcomed back by one of the least controversial figures in fashion and ODLR drums up some buzz and hype for his Fall/Winter show in February.
As for whether he even deserves a second chance… i think so, but it’s not really for me to decide. What I will say though is that I honestly believe people in the fashion industry do and say things like he did everyday, they just don’t get caught on tape or are not the head of an influential fashion house. The modeling industry for one is one of the only industries where people have ‘the freedom to refer to people by colour and reject them in their work’. The fact that Galliano DID have such a public outburst is significant- his alcoholism was known for a very, very long time and, while Sidney Toledano did try to help him, for the most part the powers at the house of Dior (people with the money) chose to ignore his problems because they didn’t know how to go on at Dior without Galliano. Just look at how long it took them to find a successor. They are partly to blame, not for Galliano’s anti-Semitic remarks, but for how he went out the way he did. It wasn’t just a case of a drunken outburst, it was someone very sick who said things that hurt a lot of people (not denying that at all).
I think it will be a long time before he is given a position like creative director of Dior again, if ever. And I don’t think it would be good for him to be in such an intense role anytime soon anyway. There are rumours that the 3 week stint at ODLR is an interview for when Oscar finally retires, but they were dismissed. It does make sense though.
No, I don’t. The French government considers haute couture a part of their culture and for as long as they continue to support it, couture wont die. This discussion has been around for YEARS, in fact probably every season this question is brought up - is couture dying, bla bla bla. It’s not. The client base is small and exclusive but there will always be customers who can afford and want high quality, made-to-measure garments. That’s not going to change.
However, I do think that the fantasy of couture is dying. Couture exists not only to dress the extremely rich but also as a marketing ploy - to boost the image of the house. Take this as an example: a middle-class woman sees a Chanel couture dress, worth tens of thousands of Euros. She obviously can’t afford the dress but she CAN afford a Chanel lipstick or perfume. It’s that whole mentality that you’re buying a piece of a fantasy, or dream. I think this dream at the moment is kind of dead. Couture is really struggling to reinvent itself and remain relevant.
A decade ago, maybe just before all these discussions started, we had Christian Lacroix, Versace - which has only very recently returned to the calendar, Valentino by VALENTINO, and of course John Galliano for Dior. I was too young to appreciate it at the time but, later on when I became interested in fashion, what these designers and especially what Galliano did was what inspired my love of couture. That doesn’t really exist anymore. I think someone needs to inject some new life into it because, as Colin McDowell said, designers have become complacent and also their pretentiousness has stopped them from moving forward. Couture isn’t going to die, but I do feel it’s relevance and influence in the modern world is.
Oh, I didn’t say I hated fashion, just that I was (am?) bored with it. Here’s the post you’re referring to.
Anyway- interesting question! As much as I DO hate how instant everything is, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t watch the occasional live stream. I’m not sure who the first designer to stream their show live on the internet was however the first I distinctly remember was Alexander McQueen Spring 2010 - Plato’s Atlantis. It was so popular, due in part to Lady Gaga, that it crashed the server. Despite this it proved to be a hit and ever since then streaming has become the norm.
A few years ago for a high-school student from Brazil to watch Balenciaga at his computer as it happened in Paris was about as unthinkable as actually attending the show. In the past, the first we saw of a new collection wasn’t 2 minutes after it happened on instagram or even 2 hours later on style.com, it was 2 months down the track in the ad campaign run in Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar.
Now, because of social media, there exists this urgency and designers recognize this. Let’s talk about Marc Jacob’s recent collection (and livestream) for Louis Vuitton because I think what he did was important to this question. The whole show was a spectacle as we have come to expect. In the show the models came down an escalator in pairs. It was over in no more than 6 minutes. (If you’re not familiar with how long shows can be, usually they are closer to 15-20 minutes) For such an elaborate and presumably expensive set, this seems ridiculous, right? But in those 6 minutes we were presented with a very strong vision and knew from the moment the first 2 models came out who the Louis Vuitton woman was for Spring 2013.
I don’t think live streams “ruin” fashion, but they have definitely opened a new avenue for brands to market themselves (and satisfy the consumers need for the new now) for better or worse. I think the problem comes when a designer doesn’t have a clear vision or when they try too hard to be forward thinking and it gets lost.