20TH CENTURY DESIGNER RESEARCH FILE GARETH PUGH/ PIERRE CARDIN/ STEPHEN BURROWS
Sunderland born designer Gareth Pugh has made a fashion name for himself through his dramatic, often sinister, inflated and constructed creations - which he first debuted at London Fashion Week as part of the Fashion East lineup in February 2005. He has since gone on to design outfits for Kylie Minogue’s world tours, Beth Ditto, become a regular collaborator with SHOWstudio.com (photographer Nick Knight’s fashion website), and an advocate of fashion film. “For me it brings back a certain amount of control over what I do,” says the designer. Pugh completed an Art Foundation course at City of Sunderland College in June 2000, following which he attended Central Saint Martins. He graduated in 2003. 2005 marked his London Fashion Week debut as part of Fashion East - with which he showed again in September that year. In 2006, he had his first solo show at London Fashion Week, in conjunction with On|Off and NEWGEN sponsorship. To mark Paris couture week in July 2006, Pugh staged a series of live performances on SHOWstudio entitled Fash Off. Later that year, cult East London club Boombox hosted a London Fashion Week party for the designer. He presented his second Topshop NEWGEN-sponsored show in September 2006.
GARETH PUGH AUGUST 31, 1981PRESENT
In 2007, Pugh worked his magic with Moet, designing a key pass for its room at LFW - the first of many Moet collaborations. In 2008 he designed the interior of the Moet tour bus and the Moet room at London Fashion Week. The designer presented his work as part of the Victoria & Albert Museum’s Fashion In Motion showcase in 2007. In August of the same year, his collections went on sale for the first time.
Iconic London boutique Browns Focus hosted a Halloween party with Pugh in October 2007. 2008 saw Pugh turn model, joining Agyness Deyn in a shoot with Mario Testino for American Vogue. That same year, his work appeared in Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy at The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. In July 2008, the designer scooped the Fashion Award, winning himself 150,000 and a show in Paris in the process. In tember, he presented his first show in followed by his first menswear show in in January 2009.
ANDAM euros SepParis, Paris
His first standalone store opened in Hong Kong in August 2010. “I would never in a million years think that I had been to Hong Kong last summer to open my shop. It was all very odd. It’s small and perfectly formed, slap-bang between Comme des Garcons and Gucci,” said the designer following its opening. In January 2011, Pugh was the guest designer at Italian trade show Pitti, where he presented a special collection via video installation in collaboration with producer Ruth Hogben. “To be invited as a special guest to their event is really quite an honour,” said Pugh. His fans include Daphne Guinness and Anna Dello Russo.
FEBRUARY 2006: PUGH’S FIRST READY-TO-WEAR COLLECTION:
CAMILLA MORTIN’S 2006 REVIEW FOR VOGUE:
Original? Yes. Must-see? Yes. Wearable? Well, that depends on you. A life-size black ‘crazy balloon’ twisted into the shape of a dog - that trick you always wished you’d be taught? A tall pointed gold and black clown’s hat worn with a coordinating gold and black leotard? This is a collection for those applying to Slytherin (the house of Harry Potter’s nemesis), or who love a good sci-fi, not for the faint-hearted. A girl with tinsel black hair, a fringed tinsel gold dress, smudged circus make-up and painted red nails was a fitting finale for a show thankfully condensed into an action-packed 11 moments of madness. Sadly Pete Burns was not front row, or concealed in the balloon dog look, but he certainly has a few party pieces to get himself noticed in here. This is London as our neighbours perceive us: young, fearless and quite frankly a little bit bonkers.
Style.com describes Pugh as the “latest addition to a long tradition of fashion-as-performance-art that stretches back through Alexander McQueen, John Galliano, and Vivienne Westwood to the eighties club culture of Leigh Bowery.” (Pugh, however, dismisses frequent Bowery comparisons as “lazy journalism.”) Klaus Nomi has also been suggested as an influence on Pugh. Pugh’s collections are autobiographical rather than referential, and draw inspiration from Britain’s extreme club scene. Pugh’s trademark is his experimentation with form and volume. He often uses “nonsensically shaped, wearable sculptures” to “distort the human body almost beyond recognition.” Elements in his designs include PVC inflated into voluminous coats, black and white patchwork squares, Perspex discs linked like chain mail, and shiny latex masks and leggings; he has used materials including mink, parachute silk, foam footballs, afro-weave synthetic hair, and electrically charged plastic in his clothing. Pugh describes his designs as being “about the struggle between lightness and darkness.” * IMAGES FROM 2013 FALL COLLECTION
PUGH’S TRADEMARK, VOLUME AND DISTORTION:
GARETH PUGH FLAGSHIP STORE, HONG KONG:
PIERRE CARDIN JULY 2, 1922PRESENT
“I asked myself: why is it that only rich people can access exclusive fashion? Why can’t a man or a woman off the street do so? I could change this rule. And I did.” Is Pierre Cardin a revolutionary man or a visionary? I would say he’s a precursor of what international fashion is today. This man was the first to open in 1958 a high fashion store in Japan. And if this wasn’t enough to prove his geniality, he was also the first to launch a collection created expressively for department stores. In 1979 he even did a fashion show on the Great Wall of China. Pierre Cardin, Italian-born French designer, began his career as an apprentice tailor in 1936 at Sant Etienne. He also worked with Elsa Schiapparelli. He was head tailor for Dior in 1947, he took part in the invention of the New Look, the same year in which he was turned down by Balenciaga. BY MONICA LOMBARDI
Then in 1950 he decided to start his own company, creating his fashion house. After abandoning in 1966 the Chambre Syndacale, he chose the "ThĂŠĂ˘tre des Ambassadeurs" as the place for his shows and in 1971 the Espace Cardin, where he in person promotes new talents. His relationship with theater is of deep affection also thanks to his friendship with demiurge Jean Cocteau and will dedicate his entire life to this passion, buying theaters and buildings. Like a King Midas, he increases his empire, starting from a chain of restaurants, Art Nouveau Maxim's, with ten locations across the world. Despite being 89, he doesnâ€™t slow down and designs Palais Lumiere that will be built in Venice for the expo of 2015: a 245 meter tall tower, made of six disks where there will be everything and more, from a movie theater to hotels. But lets go back to the avant-garde and futuristic fashion that he developed in a recognizable and unpredictable style. He also says of having been inspired by the universe, satellites and computers. As for the 1967 "Cosmos" dress, a tunic with the application of a rubber circle, or the spacesuits thought out for the whole family.
CARDIN AS HEAD TAILOR AT DIOR: 1946-1949
CARDIN’S AESTHETIC: Avant-garde is a key word: garments in Perspex, vinyl shorts, plastic accessories, slit lens glasses. Cardin designs an idea, a concept through which pure creativity becomes high fashion. Stripes and bubbles from the 1970 Earth-moon collection play on new fabrics, making his style and time unique, often ignoring the feminine shape to focus on the future, recalling his studies in architecture. He was also a predecessor in architecture, like the construction of Palais Bulle, near Cannes, an extravagant built-up area of small houses in the shape of bubbles, almost a manifesto of the couturier, a tribute to what is perhaps his most famous creation: the “bubble dress”.
FACTS: During the 1960s, Cardin began a practise that is now commonplace by creating the system of licenses that he was to apply to fashion. A clothing collection launched around this period surprised all by displaying the designer’s logo on the garments for the first time. Cardin resigned from the Chambre Syndicale in 1966 and began showing his collections in his own venue, the “Espace Cardin” (opened 1971) in Paris, formerly the “Théâtre des Ambassadeurs”, near the Embassy of the United States in Paris. The Espace Cardin is also used to promote new artistic talents, like theater ensembles, musicians, and others. He was also contacted by Pakistan International Airlines to design uniforms for the flag carrier. The uniforms were introduced in 1966 to 1971 and became an instant hit. In 1971, Cardin redesigned the Barong Tagalog, a national costume of the Philippines by opening the front, removing the cuffs that needed cufflinks, flaring the sleeves, and minimizing the embroidery. It was also tapered to the body, in contrast with the traditional loose-fitting design; it also had a thicker collar with sharp and pointed cuffs. A straight jacket design was favored by President Ferdinand Marcos. Cardin was a member of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture et du Prêt-à-Porter from 1953 to 1993. Like many other designers today, Cardin decided in 1994 to show his collection only to a small circle of selected clients and journalists. After a break of 15 years, he showed a new collection to a group of 150 journalists at his bubble home in Cannes.
CARDINâ€™S BUBBLE HOUSE: Continuously fascinated by geometric shapes, in 1975, Cardin applied his fetish for the bubble to a monumental domestic work which would become Le Palais Bulles (the Bubble House), along with the help of architect Antti Lovag. Cardin furnished the Bubble House with his original creations. The curves of the Bubble House extend over 1,200 square metres and contain ten bedrooms decorated by contemporary artists, as well as a panoramic living room.
CARDIN AND INDUSTRIAL DESIGN: Cardin entered industrial design by developing thirteen basic design “themes” that would be applied to various products, each consistently recognizable and carrying his name and logo. He expanded into new markets that “to most Paris fashion designers, it is rank heresy.” The business initiatives included a contract with American Motors Corporation (AMC). Following the success of the Aldo Gucci designed Hornet Sportabout station wagon interiors, the automaker incorporated Cardin’s theme on the AMC Javelin starting in mid-1972. This was one of the first American cars to offer a special trim package created by a famous French fashion designer. It was daring and outlandish design “with some of the wildest fabrics and patterns ever seen in any American car”. The original sales estimate by AMC was for 2,500 haute couture “pony” and muscle cars. The special interior option was continued on the 1973 model year Javelins. During the two model years, a total of 4,152 AMC Javelins received this bold mirrored, multi-colored pleated stripe pattern in tones of Chinese red, plum, white, and silver that were set against a black background. The Cardin Javelins also came with the designer’s emblems on the front fenders and had a limited selection of exterior colors (Trans Am Red, Snow White, Stardust Silver, Diamond Blue, and Wild Plum) to coordinate with the special interiors. However, 12 Cardin optioned cars were special ordered in Midnight Black paint.
CARDIN AND FURNITURE DESIGN:
PIERRE CARDIN TODAY: He is fashion’s world leader. Up to 200,000 people work throughout the world under the trademark Pierre Cardin. With 900 licences for more than 1,000 products in 140 countries where spread out. His trademark is one of the most instantly recognized. Pierre Cardin is ready for the 21st century. He has a Haute Couture and Design idea laboratory set up, from which every year about 20,000 sketches, samples, patterns, models or mockups are submitted to him. To these, he adds his own brilliant ideas for his collections each year. But he is not planning to retire. In May 2002, he said he will die in harness, working at his fashion. “I love my work” he said. In early May 2004, Pierre Cardin put his company on the market, hoping to close a million dollar deal. He has an annual turnover of 24 million pounds and his company will sell at around 270 million pounds. He will retain strong ties with the company and says he will continue to design as long as he lives.
PIERRE CARDIN TODAY: VOGUE UK MAY 4, 2011: PIERRE CARDIN is set to sell his eponymous business - and hopes to achieve up to €1 billion (£900 million) for it. The 88-year-old designer wishes that the business should continue long after he dies and feels that selling now, when the acquisition market is at its most optimistic in a decade thanks to LVMH’s purchase of Bulgari (read more here), is his best opportunity to ensure that. Whilst the price may be prohibitive - bankers assert that it may be worth closer to €200 million, although no figure is clear thanks to the division of his earnings via thousands of licensing agreements Cardin is throwing one thing in to the bargain. “I want to remain as creative director,” he told the Wall Street Journal. “It would be in their interest for the brand’s image.”
< Girl wearing vintage Cardin skirt in New York
DESIGNER 3 STEPHEN BURROWS MAY 14, 1943PRESENT Friends with Warhol, dressing Cher, partying at Studio 54: Stephen Burrows was the designer for the druglaced disco days—and one of the first African-American names in the industry. Known for his signature “lettuce hems” and sexy, flowing chiffons, Burrows notably exaggerated stitching instead of hiding it and often used bright colors like red for the thread. Ginia Bellefante of the New York Times summed up the sexiness of the label by saying, “The most distinctive element of Mr. Burrows’s clothes is that they looked as if they left the house around midnight to wind up the next afternoon a crumpled heap on some bedroom floor at an address the wearer was probably not all that familiar with 24 hours earlier.” After his clothes sold successfully at O, a NYC gallery-boutique located across from Max’s Kansas City, Henri Bendel created an atelier in the basement of its store called Stephen Burrows’ World. But in 1982, Bendel was sold, and Burrows’s fame and fortune went with it. In 2002, after twenty years of obscurity, he made one of the biggest comebacks in fashion history with a revamped Bendel boutique and, later, Fashion Week shows. Soon after, he also debuted a watered-down version of his line on the Home Shopping Network.
Recognized as the first African-American fashion designer to have achieved international fame, Stephen Burrows name has been etched in New York City’s Fashion Walk of Fame for being an icon of the fashion industry. A genius who created revolutionary, structured styles in the 70′s with rich colors and modern sexy cuts, Burrows pioneered the use of stretch fabrics such as wool and rayon jersey for tight fitting comfortable clothes. Inspired by music, dance and the fluidity of the body, Burrows inventiveness earned him three prestigious Coty awards. In 1982, after financial troubles, Burrows turned his focus to designing for theaters, but made a very successful ready to wear comeback in 2002 via a fashion show event dubbed as ‘the party of the season’ by Vogue and the reopening of the “Stephen Burrows World” Boutique at Henri Bendel’s. His collection received great reviews from fashion critics worldwide and has made him unstoppable since then. In 2003, he launched a successful “Alva by Burrows” line on U.S. Home Shopping Network, followed in 2007 by the “S by Burrows” label for Home Shopping Europe in Germany. And recently taking an inspiration from Anna Cleveland, daughter to muse and model Pat Cleveland he launched “Everyday Girl” line of dresses. This new line has proven his ability to provide sensual and sophisticated clothing for all ages and has made him a popular name among the youth such as the Pop-Country singer Taylor Swift, who wore a signature sparkly Burrows number when she rang in 2009 on Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve Special.
BURROWS START UP:
After having success selling pieces to friends, Burrows cofounded the O Boutique at Nineteenth Street and Park Avenue South in 1968. Attracting the countercul-tural luminaries that hung out at Max’s Kansas City across the street, the shop and its proprietor gained a following, but Burrow’s lack of business experience resulted in O Boutique’s eventual closure. In 1970 Geraldine Stutz, president of Henri Bendel, gave Burrows a space in the workroom of Bendel’s Studio, the small manufacturing part of the store, and Pat Tennant, the manager of the design studio, became an important mentor to the designer. Stephen Burrows World opened in the summer of 1970 on the third floor of the store, as a packed audience watched a fashion show set to disco music. Leather garments with nailstudded embellishments, midiskirts, skin-tight sweaters, suede bags dripping with fringe, and Burrows’s famous super bright jersey knits shown on ethnically diverse male and female models impressed audience and press alike.
DESIGN ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Burrows’s fluid, sexy separates are iconic of the individualist, confident woman of the 1970s. The “black is beautiful” philosophy of the 1970s was showcased through Burrows’s use of African American models and his success as an African American fashion designer. More than any other designer of the 1970s, Burrows captures in his designs the vivacious energy of the disco scene. By 1973 he was at the top of the field, winning the prestigious Coty award, the highest honor in American fashion, which he was honored with again in 1974 and 1977. He was one of five American designers invited to show their clothes along with five French designers at a fashion spectacle at the Palace of Versailles in 1973. Influenced by his success and the lure of Seventh Avenue, Burrows moved out on his own that same year. With this move he lost the guidance and protection of Bendel’s staff, however, and his business suffered due to poor management. Used to overseeing the details of his clothing line’s production, he was unable to achieve the same quality utilizing massmanufacturing processes. From 1977 to 1982 Burrows relaunched a successful collection with Henri Bendel. He stepped out of the New York fashion world in 1982 when the mood in fashion was changing and the disco era was coming to a close. He relaunched a third time with Henri Bendel in 2002, when his now-retro fashions were once again in demand.
The 1973 gala designed to raise funds for the restoration of the Palace of Versailles more than lived up to the hype, going down in history as the night that put American fashion, and African-American models, on the map. A new documentary by first-time director Deborah Riley Draper tells the behind-the-scenes story of that Nov. 28 evening, when five U.S. designers faced off against France’s top couturiers in front of an audience of royals and celebrities, including Princess Grace of Monaco, Christina Onassis and Andy Warhol. “There were French designers and American designers and 650 millionaires in the room, but there was a before and there was an after to that story, so I think it’s very important that we start at the beginning,” the 44-year-old director added. Le Grand Divertissement à Versailles — the brainchild of fashion publicist Eleanor Lambert, creator of the Best Dressed List — pitted Halston, Oscar de la Renta, Bill Blass, Anne Klein and Stephen Burrows against Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior, Hubert de Givenchy, Pierre Cardin and Emanuel Ungaro. “She had spent years trying to create a way to level the playing field with American sportswear, and this was the night that did it,” Riley Draper said. Originally viewed as underdogs, the U.S. designers emerged triumphant after a whirlwind 35-minute presentation that kicked off with Liza Minnelli singing “Bonjour, Paris!” and ended with delirious applause.
EXCERPT FROM WWD ARTICLE “Famous Runway Showdown Revisited in ‘Versailles ‘73’” WRITTEN BY JOELLE DIDERICH AND IN REFERENCE TO VERSAILLES’73 DOCUMENTARY
BLACK MODELS OF VERSAILLES 1973: Pat Cleveland, Bethann Hardison, Billie Blair, Jennifer Brice, Alva Chinn, Norma Jean Darden, Charlene Dash, Barbara Jackson, China Machado, Ramona Saunders, and Amina Warsuma. These eleven models took part in the legendary Grand Divertissement à Versailles fashion show held in 1973 at the Palace of Versailles. The show was organized to raise money for the restoration of the palace. It was designed as a true fashion throw-down between five American designers (Halston, Oscar de la Renta, Bill Blass, Anne Klein, and African-American designer Stephen Burrows) and five French designers (Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior’s head designer Marc Bohan, Hubert de Givenchy, Emanuel Ungaro and Pierre Cardin). Since American fashion wasn’t the powerhouse it is today, this was the perfect opportunity for the American designers to make a big impression. And they did. By making a conscious decision to include black models in their presentation (while the French used none) the designers sent a clear message through their clothing and the diverse women modeling them that American fashion was a force and not going anywhere. In addition, the eleven African American models served as an example of the beauty of diversity and ultimately paved the way for black beauties such as Iman, Naomi Campbell and Tyra Banks to emerge as supermodels.
BURROWS IN RETROSPECT:
BURROWS IN RETROSPECT:
Stephen Burrows is not making another comeback. At least not right now, w has a moment, whenever his disco-era look of rainbow jersey dresses and l there was more than a hint of his influence on the runways of Diane von F Marc Jacobs (berry colors and groovy prints that suggest the â€™40s by way
BURROWS TODAY (2005-12):
when he is once again having a moment. Every decade or so, Mr. Burrows lettuce-edge hems has an unexpected revival in fashion. This season, Furstenberg (color blocking meets glam-rock wrap dress) and Marc by of the â€™70s).
STEPHEN BURROWS’ WORLD
END. AMANDA AL-MAHDI FASH 247 SUMMER ‘13 PROF. MARK HUGHES
SOURCES: VOGUE.COM (ITALY, UK) VOGUE ENCYCLO VOGUE ARCHIVES WWW.FASHIONMODELDIRECTORY.COM PINTEREST.COM STYLE.COM TWISTEDSIFTER.COM GARETHPUGH.NET NEW YORK MAGAZINE FASHION BANK WWD.COM HUFFINGTON POST THE NEW YORK TIMES (FASHION AND STYLE)