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Join Date: Oct 2009
We will often, in paying attention to the storied brands ossified in fashion's near history, go on a bit of a history lesson. The media engendered Raf -v- Hedi transfer sagas pitted Yves against Christian; Pinault -v- Arnault. It was silly nonsense really, an old score mainly set to rest, but it caught the pack imagination and obviously the two french conglommerates compete in the same contemporary market. We in fact saw a concerted phallanx from brand team LVMH to flank Dior with a co-ordinated riff on the codes of Yves also. A cross brand cohort to poke a finger out of the dark and into the light. Dior's purity, classicism, sensuality, modernism was flanked (in modernist graphics by LV, Fendi - though that is Yves Mondrian dresses nevertheless Dior is avowedly modernist - just by the pure timing of it's iconography), yet the strict minimalism is cut back with japonisme, slouch, the transcendental Jung (Celine, Givenchy). The latter aspects being essentially outside Dior's DNA but linked back via notions of elegance and purity.
The Yves and Dior thing essentially takes us back in time to a point in year 1960. For any not familiar with the basic plot - a potted stroke - Christian Dior passed, in 57, the house reins to the young Yves. But by 1960, after a supposedly poor season industrialist brand owner Marcel Boussac sacks Yves and permits him to be pressganged/conscripted into the french military. Where he lasts for just 20 days. The initiation rites - hazing - he endures and the psychedlics and electromagnetic experimentations in hospital after, says Yves, are what later drive him to drink and drug misjudgements.
Pierre Berge once romantic partner, then solely business partner, sells in 2008/9 after Yves death from brain cancer the art collection they's built up out of proceeds of 'inventing' Pret a Porter for in excess of 300 million euro.
YSL was always the newgen upstart. In a way he and Pierre came to win as the 60's moved on and into the 70's. Dior's iconic moment perhaps remains 1947's new look silhouette. Their DNA is bound up with the 50's. Yves, after he and Pierre set up shop in opposition from 1960 drive a more libidinous, edgier, sexier louche particularly from 1966 with LeSmoking and later see-thru peasant blouses, safari, a path to the botanical gardens of Marrakech and powder haze of Studio 54.
So this is the backdrop to Berge's appointment, aparently, of Mr Hedi Slimane. Hedi delivers a collection of Yves tropes rocked up heroin chic goth stylie to all black. ''Wiccan'' cries Tim Blanks on Style.com. In the aftermath of the collection Hedi transmits an aura as black as his collection into the net via his open spat with NYT's Cathy Horyn and his malicious tweeting.
We are reminded that it's not the end of the world but a New Dawn. Raf turned our heads to light. He was also phallanxed from outside the LVMH stable by Prada, MiuMiu, Chloe, Rick Owens, Gareth Pugh, Yohji and no doubt several others.
It was a stale old rivalry in the historical sense but really faced off elegant natural sensuality against a dirtier form of rocked out sex. Cleanliness was not necessarily an old fashioned value. Just attention to the body in honoured preparation. For occasion or sensual ritual. Yves represented, Raf victorious, Hedi in someplace of darkness.The light of SS13 the bright sweet light of the cosmic natural high.
Last edited by Tentacl Ventricl; 04-10-2012 at
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