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L'Enfant Terrible
 
The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk,” Exhibition Tour. Now 62, he is in his fifth decade in the fashion industry and has the output to warrant an exhibition on this scale. With his avant-garde fashion creations and cutting-edge designs, Jean Paul Gaultier has shaped the look of fashion over  40 years. Through twists, transformations, transgressions and reinterpretations, he not only erases the boundaries between cultures but also the sexes, redefining the idea of androgyny or subverting fashion codes. His career has been distinguished by a quality not generally associated with high fashion: humour.
Via Monte Napoleone, Milan


:.
A conversation with Jean Paul Gaultier and Suzy Menkes
 
 
 
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film and photos credits:
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
Jean-Paul Gaultier
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Suzy Menkes
Kunsthal Rotterdam
National Gallery of Victoria
Grand Palais, Galeries Nationales



L'Enfant Terrible, JEAN-PAUL GAULTIER!

Peter Lindbergh - Jean Paul Gaultier, 2005 © Peter Lindbergh
A phenomenon that has captivated more than one million visitors in its historic international tour, the exhibition “The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk,initiated, produced and circulated by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts in collaboration with the Maison Jean Paul Gaultier, will be presented at the Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais in Paris, from April 1 to August 3, 2015. An unrivalled success for a fashion exhibition, the tenth leg of its tour – after Montreal, Dallas, San Francisco, Madrid, Rotterdam, Stockholm, Brooklyn, London and Melbourne – has just been announced and will mark a high point in Gaultier’s career.

Jean Paul Gaultier, La Vierge aux serpents (Kylie Minogue), 2008, foto Pierre et Gilles
A million visitors since the start of the tour. In my wildest dreams, I could never have imagined that this amazing adventure would travel the entire planet.” the designer remarked.

Jean-Paul Gaultier with his maternal grandmother, Marie c.1958 © Jean-Paul Gaultier archives
Gaultier never received formal training as a designer. Instead, he started sending sketches to famous couture stylists at an early age. Pierre Cardin was impressed by his talent and hired him as an assistant in 1970. Afterwards he worked with Jacques Esterel in 1971 and Jean Patou later that year, then returning to manage the Pierre Cardin boutique in Manila for a year in 1974. In 1976, Gaultier established his own fashion label and held his first runway show in Paris. The French couturier launched his first Haute Couture collection in 1997 and he has been artistic director at Dior and Hermès
In September 2014 Gaultier announced that after 38 years he would be closing his ready-to-wear business to focus on couture, perfume and other projects. He said the exhausting pace of today's market, which demands designers produce up to 12 collections a year, was stripping creativity from the fashion cycle. “I was doing around nine collections a year and I don't speak about the accessories etcetera,” he said. “What has become terrible is it's now about a routine, that you have to start again and again and the machine never stops. You cannot be creative like that. Please, I should like a little time to think.

Apparitions dress. Les Vierges (Virgins) collection Couture S/S 2007 ©Patrice Stable/Jean-Paul Gaultier
With his avant-garde fashion creations and cutting-edge designs, Jean Paul Gaultier has shaped the look of fashion over  four decades. Known as an eccentric character, full of wit and inspiration, Gaultier has helped to shape the fashion world, cementing himself as a mainstay among the world’s finest designers. Through twists, transformations, transgressions and reinterpretations, he not only erases the boundaries between cultures but also the sexes, redefining the idea of androgyny or subverting fashion codes. His three-decade career has been distinguished by a quality not generally associated with high fashion: humour.  Scouting for models, the designer famously ran a classified ad in the French daily Libération that read: Non‐conformist designer seeks unusual models—the conventionally pretty need not apply


Despite his reservations about a retrospective, Gaultier said he consented “after curators agreed to make the exhibition as lifelike as possible by incorporating animated mannequins that talk and a moving catwalk that allows exhibition visitors to sit front row. I said I should love it to be as lifelike as possible, because I did not want it to be boring,” he said. No one could ever accuse Jean Paul Gaultier of being boring.
Indeed it is difficult not to like this exhibition. 140 outfits, mainly couture, selected amongst 8000  archived by the house since the mid 70s are presented alongside multimedia collaborations involving the best creative talents of the last 30 years in films (Pedro Almodóvar, Peter Greenaway, Luc Besson, Caro and Jeunet), contemporary dance (Angelin Preljocaj, Régine Chopinot and Maurice Béjart), popular music (Mylène Farmer, Rita Mitsouko, Kylie Minogue and of course Madonna) and photography (a long list from Andy Warhol to David LaChapelle).

Alix Malka, Andreja Pejic Jean-Paul Gaultier haute couture F/W 2012-13 © Alix Malka
The maverick designer has dressed men in skirts and championed models of all shapes and sizes on his runway in his ongoing mission to challenge gender stereotypes and reflect social change through fashion.  Gaultier’s corseted women seemed like the negation of the feminist struggles of the 1960s and 1970s, but in reality the designer prompted a more post-feminist emancipation in terms of appearance. Many stars have worn the various iterations of his corsets with concentrically topstitched bra cups—Madonna topping the list with the iconic designs for the 1990 Blond Ambition World Tour, but also Catherine Ringer of Les Rita Mitsouko, Cindy Sherman, Grace Jones, Dita Von Teese and Kylie Minogue. His risque and often irreverent styles have earned him the designation of couture's enfant terrible. “I try to show that there is not only one kind of beauty, Gaultier once said. Open your mind and you can find beauty everywhere. I like to explore the frontier of what can be seen as vulgar and tacky and what is elegant and beautiful.

Perou, Dita Voon Tees: Flaunt 2003 Dada collection Jean-Paul Gaultier prêt-à-porter S/S 2003 ©Perou
SUZY MENKES & JEAN-PAUL GAULTIER IN CONVERSATION.
On March 24, 2012, Suzy Menkes, international Vogue editor (former IHT fashion editor), and Jean Paul Gaultier met in the de Young's Koret Auditorium to discuss the designer's career in conjunction with the special exhibition The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk. Asked by Suzy Menkes about “the whole business of putting sexuality on the map – which was completely taboo in the 70s and early 80s,Gaultier  said he never set out to be the enfant terrible of the fashion world: “My goal was never to be scandalous – it was a reflection of what I was seeing around me.” He referenced the young women of Paris from the time, Farida Khelfa being one, who would buy designer clothes at flea markets and put their own spin on them, wearing Chanel jackets over bras for a night at the clubs. “I was seeing that and thinking of the corset of my grandmother, and just going with the time – sexual liberty and freedom. Women could be strong but also show their sexuality – but it didn’t mean that they were facile.

Hey guys, do not miss this book!
The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk Hardcover – 
by Suzy Menkes  (Author), Nathalie Bondil (Author), Florence Muller (Author), Jean Paul Gaultier (Foreword)

 

L'Enfant Terrible
Exhibition Tour
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Patek Philippe 5175R
Debut
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Elie Saab Couture
Haute Couture F/W 2014
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VERTU for BENTLEY
Debut
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.Dr. Louboutin.
Laurea Honoris causa
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.Gaultier Paris Fall 2014.
Haute Couture F/W 2014
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.King KARL.
Quintessential
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.Murad’s 3D fairytale.
Haute Couture S/S 2014
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