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November 24th

Parterre - Palazzo Mezzanotte
Milan - Piazza degli Affari, 6

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Chairman & Designer, Jean-Paul Gaultier and Creative Director, Hermès

Jean paul Gaultier, born in 1952, is the enfant terrible of fashion, as he likes to define himself. He began his career at 18 by sending his sketches to Pierre Cardin who promptly hired him. After a brief period spent at the ateliers of Patou and Tarlazzi, he returned to Cardin in 1974 who sent him to the Philippines to design some collections especially for the American market. Just two years later he presented the first collection for women bearing his name. That was the beginning of an adventure that led him to become a cult figure on the international fashion scene, which is inextricably bound to the world of pop culture. In 1981 the Japanese Kashiyama group financed his new business and in 1984 his first menswear line was presented. His irreverent and wry style which mixed tattoos, navy stripes, vintage elements and metrosexuality won over Madonna who asked him to design the costumes for the Blonde Ambition tour of 1990, and this started his long standing bond with the world of music. With very strong ties to Italy (Gibò by Franco Pené produced his lines initially and was followed by the Aeffe Group owned by Alberta and Massimo Ferretti which produces them currently), over the years he built an empire that includes childrenswear, jeans perfumes (launched with Bpi in 1993), knitwear and accessories. And in addition to this his haute couture line was launched in 1997, thereby placing him among the great French fashion houses. In 1999 he sold a 35% share of his share capital to the Hermès group. In 2003 this partnership went on to a second level with Hermès appointing him artistic director for the entire women’s fashion division and showing a collection right loyal to the ultra luxurious traits of the fashion house, but with Gaultier’s ironic touch. Currently, the enfant terrible of fashion continues to have fun designing stage costumes for Madonna and Kylie Minogue, Mylene Farmer and Marion Cotillard, who wore her good luck dress by Monsieur Gaultier to the Oscars.