Jean Paul Gaultier Leaves a Mark as He Bows Out with Final Show in Paris
Jean Paul Gaultier announced his retirement and brought an end to his 50-year long career with a finale at Paris Fashion Week. His showcase was a fashion party and a delight for the fraternity
The fashion fraternity and the rest of the world was left in awe as fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier walked the ramp for his final walk as he packed up his 50-year career with the star power befitting the king of a half-century of fashion. Celebrities, socialites, editors and te who’s who of fashion took their front row seats in anticipation at Paris' Théâtre du Châtelet for a spectacular show with surprise appearances from the likes of Paris Jackson who made her runway debut, Boy George and Dita Von Teese among others. Jean Paul Gaultier shocked fans and the fraternity when he announced his final show via Twitter and needless to say, he most certainly left his mark. Gaultier has built a career on the unexpected, reinvented classics and taken even the most basic designs and turned them into haute couture.
About his final show he said, "It's going to be quite a party," he promised in a short video on Twitter. And indeed it was. He surpassed expectations. An orchestra played with an enormous cast, and the spectacular performance by Boy George really was the cherry on top of the cake. On the runway, Irina Shayk, Jourdan Dunn and and Bella Hadid walked alongside Khelfa, Karen Elson and Estelle Lefebure, models who rose to fame in the 80s and 90s."I feel so much love today with all those old models that came and wanted to make my show," Gaultier told reporters backstage.
This show celebrating 50 years of my career will also be my last. But rest assured Haute Couture will continue with a new concept. pic.twitter.com/PJCC53K4tm— Jean Paul Gaultier (@JPGaultier) January 17, 2020
The final show paid homage to Gaultier’s previous iconic works including the iconic cone bra and corset the French designer famously created for Madonna's Blonde Ambition Tour. The designer reworked with buckles for muse Dita Von Teese, and even built into a black coffin guarded by black-suited models on stage. The coffin was opened to revealed model Issa Lish, who walked down the runway wearing a frilled, puff-sleeved minidress.
"Couture is not dead!" Gaultier later said, perhaps to make clear that his departure from runways does not mark the end of high fashion. Anyone who is privy in knowledge pertaining to fashion will know that Jean Paul Gaultier is a master of mixing the old with the new which was evident with his reprised version of the sailor motif. Everyone was left in awe of the genius show that the designer showcased. Many paid tributes and sent well wish the designer’s way.
Supermodel Naomi Campbell paid tribute to the designer on Twitter: "So many years of incredible memories !! Every moment has been an absolute honor and pleasure."
So many years of incredible memories !! Every moment has been an absolute honor and pleasure The impact and inspiration you have left on this industry is beyond words. Creative visionary. Industry leader. #LEGEND. Friend. We love you @JPGaultier #50years pic.twitter.com/dgH56V3V2S— Naomi Campbell (@NaomiCampbell) January 22, 2020
Now 50 years is quite a long time to dominate the fashion scene and while Gaultier may have retired from the runway, the 67-year-old designer is still captivating audiences with his "Fashion Freak Show," a musical revue that premiered in 2018 and is soon to move onto the latest stop on its world tour -- Russia. The stage show encompasses everything the fashion world loves about Gaultier: his refusal to embrace conformity and his desire for something new. After his final runway show on Wednesday he told media backstage, "For me, it was a pleasure for me to make a party of it. And what a party it was. "Not exactly what was supposed to happen, happened. But it doesn't matter, it's part of life. In life, you have to be a chameleon,” he concluded.