Guess what, guys.
Nicolas Ghesquiere is not at the post office, he’s not at a public pool, and he’s definitely not falling victim to a two-for-one deal on bags of Tostitos at Target. The Spring/Summer (and also conveniently first) issue of the bi-annual System Magazine provides some slightly more accurate intel regarding the designer’s whereabouts with a fifteen-page Q&A that covers everything we’re thinking except for precisely where he’s going and, you know, what he’s doing. Mentionable, however, are the last couple sentences of the interview, where Ghesquiere explains we may see him again at the “[e]nd of this year or early 2014. Nothing’s 100 per cent confirmed yet. But don’t worry, I’ll let everyone know.”
In addition to the sufficiently insightful rhetoric Ghesquiere provides on his fifteen years at the helm of Balenciaga, the pros and cons of luxury groups, fast fashion and the way in which we consume this blazon of art, I was particularly drawn to the corresponding twelve-page spread featuring photos of Mr. Ghesquiere in his work place. He stands, he sits, he leans, he crouches, he purses his lips and then opens them up but in spite of the slight nuances, his stoic facial expression remains effectively the same. I’m not sure what it means and whether, in fact, it actually means anything at all but flip through the images culled for you above and tell me you agree. (Please?)
In the mean time, here are some of the particularly fascinating things Monsieur Ghesquiere had to share.
On his inspiration: “These days I sense that people don’t dig particularly deep; inspiration rarely goes beyond borrowing what’s happened in the past and rarely without adding any new layers of context. By that I mean the culture of fashion has lost some of its depth. Maybe it’s the realm of pop culture, alongside television and music. It’s never been so fashionable to like fashion as right now.”
On the creative process: “I find it’s a dialogue between what I am looking for and what I’m instinctively longing for.”
On fast fashion: “Production has eclipsed creativity.”
On Tom Ford at Gucci and Ghesquiere’s changing opinion on art and commerce: “Suddenly, the business side of fashion was no longer embarassing. Tom’s a total fashion fanatic but he embraced the business side as much as the seasons of fashion. Thanks to the culture that he and Domenico de Sole established, we were suddenly free of any psychological complexes.”
On his favorite collection for Balenciaga: “I enjoyed watching the punks collection again…Then there was the one we called ‘The Explorers’ with big parkas and white puffball dresses, Autumn/Winter 2005-2006.”
On changing trends: “Fashion is a playground up until a certain age, but then you have to find your own signature and your own style.”
On timeliness: “Doing things at the right moment is the essence of fashion. Early enough to surprise, but not too early that people only see the idea as an anecdote.”
On success in fashion: “[It] is not just the women who actually wear your clothes; it’s your influence on the way people dress on a far broader level.”
On happiness: “The chance for personal expression is a great way to happiness.”
On the future: “I don’t want to sound pretentious and say that I am going to invent an entirely new model of operating in fashion, but that’s my ambition.”
And when asked if Ghesquiere had any advice to give to his successor, Alexander Wang, he simpled remarked, “No, I haven’t, honestly none at all.”