Hedi Slimane

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Hedi Slimane

In November 2000, Karl Lagerfeld decided to lose weight in order that he could adopt Slimane's new skinny silhouette. "Until then, I had got along fine with my excess weight and I had no health problems, or - which would be worse - emotional problems, but I suddenly wanted to wear clothes designed by Hedi Slimane, who used to work for Saint Laurent and now creates the Dior Homme collections," Lagerfeld told the telegraph. "But these fashions, modeled by very, very slim boys, required me to lose at least six of my 16 stone." The designer lost more than 90 lbs over the course of the year, and wore Slimane's designs faithfully the younger designer’s time at Dior. Hedi Slimane is a French-born, Italian-Tunisian designer and photographer, best known for changing the silhouette of men's fashion to super-skinny during his time at Dior Homme. Since leaving Dior, he has worked as a photographer, famously documenting British rock star Pete Doherty and the Berlin club scene. He was born in Paris in 1968 to an Italian mother and a Tunisian father, Slimane learned the art of photography before he even reached his teens and began making his own clothes at age 16. After studying History of Art at the Ecole du Louvre, Slimane began working with fashion consultant Jean-Jacques Picart in 1992 on an exhibition celebrating the centenary of Louis Vuitton's iconic monogram. The project invited seven fashion designers - Azzedine Alaia, Helmut Lang, Sybilla, Manolo Blahnik, Isaac Mizrahi, Romeo Gigli and Vivienne Westwood - to reinterpret the monogram canvas in celebration of its longevity - and is widely considered to be Vuitton's first step towards fashion, before the appointment of ready-to-wear creative director Marc Jacobs in 1998. After completing his work there in 1995, Slimane was named menswear director at Yves Saint Laurent in 1996, before being made the men's artistic director the following year. Yves Saint Laurent himself attended his debut menswear show and applauded enthusiastically from the front row. After presenting the Black Tie collection for autumn/winter 2000-2001 in January 2000 - in which he introduced his new skinny silhouette - Slimane left YSL; declined the creative directorship at Jil Sander following the founder's departure; and accepted a role at the helm of Christian Dior's men's line. In 2002, the Council of Fashion Designers of America named him the International Designer of the Year in New York. In July 2007, Hedi Slimane decided to quit the house of Dior. In order to convince him to stay, LVMH proposed him to finance his own signature line. Negotiations lasted for 6 months. Slimane called them off in February. He made a statement on his website to explain his choice. Slimane did not want to lose his creative freedom, sell his name, and loose the management of his own brand. He left for US, joined his friend Gus Van Sant, and started a new project, "Young American", which was partly shown at FOAM museum in July 2007. He opened 2 others shows, at Arndt and Partners gallery, in Berlin, Sweet Bird of Youth (group show), and a solo show at Ellipse Foundation for contemporary art. He is expected to debut a line of his own which will include women’s wear. Having a background in furniture design, fragrance, store design, and photography, Slimane is noted for the slim silhouette of his menswear. In addition to his work as a fashion designer, he has been involved in various other projects, including becoming editor-in-chief of Liberation and designing album covers for artists such as Phoenix. In 2004, he published Stage, a collection of his Rock photography. Slimane has published several other books of his photography and has contributed writing and photography to many style and fashion magazines including Vanity Fair. Slimane has many connections to the British indie-rock scene, notably his close friendship with controversial Babyshambles singer Pete Doherty. In 2004...
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