Text by Walter Grio.
I just finished watching, L’AMOUR FOU, a wonderful documentary about Yves Saint Laurent and his partner of 50 years, Pierre Bergé. The film is narrated by Bergé and I highly recommend everyone to see it.
After watching the film, I was intrigued by what I learned. Here are the top 5 things you should know.
1. Saint Laurent was Christian Dior’s successor and at the age of 21, became the Head Designer at the House of Dior after Dior died of a massive heart attack. The iconic Richard Avedon photograph, Dovima with the Elephants, was the first evening dress designed by Saint Laurent as Dior’s assistant.
2. Saint Laurent and his partner of 50 years, Pierre Bergé, first met at Christian Dior’s funeral.
3. When Saint Laurent passed away, Pierre Bergé (with auction house Christie’s) auctioned all of the artwork that Saint Laurent and Bergé have collected. The 3 day sale netted nearly $500 million breaking all sorts of records. Most of the proceeds were used to support AIDS research, something near and dear to Bergé.
4. Saint Laurent was the first designer to use ethnic models in his runway shows.
5. Saint Laurent was the first French couturier with a prêt-à-porter (ready-to-wear) line, and the first Saint Laurent Rive Gauche stores, which sold the prêt-à-porter line, opened in 1966. Fast forward to 2012, Hedi Slimane, the newly appointed YSL creative director changes the fashion house name from Yves Saint Laurent to Saint Laurent Paris.