Hedi Slimane is renowned for reinventing luxury fashion house Yves Saint Laurent, notably famed for Le Smoking Suit and the Pop Art Collection of 1966. When Slimane took over the brand in 2012, after a two year stint as collection and art director back in 1997, part of his new role as Creative Director was in the rebranding of the fashion house, changing the icon is YSL name to Saint Laurent Paris. With this he also brought a glamorous-grunge 'I'm with the band' appeal to the brand. Since Slimane gained creative control over the brand, it is impossible to deny the affect his rock n roll designs and campaigns have had on the fashion industry. The return of nineties grunge is apparent, however with Slimane's influence, it has been given a high fashion twist. Think Courtney Love circa Hole, but the tatty leather jacket from a thrift shop thrown over your Mum's nighty and battered docs have now been replaced with a tailored leather jacket over a silk, lace trimmed baby doll dress and silver buckled ankle boots.
The New Grunge style Hedi has created is a combination of the eclectic places he has lived over the past 15 years, from New York to London to California combined with his Parisian background and his resume brimming with the larges fashion houses, including Dior. The result is a high end, classy version of the raw rock'n'roll style eminent in the underground music and fashion circles of LA, NY and London.
In celebration of this, a retrospective photography exhibition has been put together called 'Sonic'; a curated collection of portraits he has taken over the past fifteen years of influential musicians when he lived in New York, California and London. His musical collaborations include Marilyn Manson, Courtney Love, Daft Punk, Keith Richards and the late Amy Winehouse. Inevitably, music and fashion are relative in their influence on each other and their impact upon society. In the exhibition 'Sonic', Slimane's high contrast, black and white portraits of musical legends, mostly hailing from the rock genre, illuminates just how similar, and thus important, music is in relation to fashion and could suggest the muses of Hedi's now infamous rock chic style. Clearly Slimane has been inspired by musical genres and era's and this is apparent in his style combinations, most recently the 90s grunge mixed with swinging sixties silhouettes in the Spring / Summer 14 Collection.
'Sonic' is due to open in Paris on the 18th September and will run until early January 2015.