Yves Saint Laurent (designer)

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Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_table_infobox_0

Yves Saint-LaurentYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_0_0
BornYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_1_0 Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent

(1936-08-01)1 August 1936 Oran, French AlgeriaYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_1_1

DiedYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_2_0 1 June 2008(2008-06-01) (aged 71)

Paris, FranceYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_2_1

NationalityYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_3_0 FrenchYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_3_1
EducationYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_4_0 Chambre Syndicale de la Haute CoutureYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_4_1
OccupationYves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_5_0 Fashion designerYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_5_1
Label(s)Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_6_0 Yves Saint LaurentYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_6_1
Partner(s)Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_header_cell_0_7_0 Pierre BergéYves Saint Laurent (designer)_cell_0_7_1

Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent (/ˌiːv ˌsæ̃ lɔːˈrɒ̃/, also UK: /- lɒˈ-/, US: /- loʊˈ-/, French: [iv sɛ̃ lɔʁɑ̃; 1 August 1936 – 1 June 2008), professionally known as Yves Saint-Laurent, was a French fashion designer who, in 1961, founded his eponymous fashion label. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_0

He is regarded as being among the foremost fashion designers in the twentieth century. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_1

In 1985, Caroline Rennolds Milbank wrote, "The most consistently celebrated and influential designer of the past twenty-five years, Yves Saint Laurent can be credited with both spurring the couture's rise from its 1960s ashes and with finally rendering ready-to-wear reputable." Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_2

He was able to adapt his style to accommodate the changes in fashion during that period. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_3

He approached fashion in a different perspective by wanting women to look comfortable yet elegant at the same time. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_4

He is also credited with having introduced the tuxedo suit for women and was known for his use of non-European cultural references, and non-white models. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_5

Early life Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_0

Saint Laurent was born on 1 August 1936, in Oran, French Algeria, to French parents, Charles and Lucienne Andrée Mathieu-Saint-Laurent. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_6

He grew up in a villa by the Mediterranean with his two younger sisters, Michèle and Brigitte. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_7

Saint Laurent liked to create intricate paper dolls, and by his early teen years, he was designing dresses for his mother and sisters. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_8

At the age of 17, Saint Laurent moved to Paris and enrolled at the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, where his designs quickly gained notice. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_9

Michel De Brunhoff, the editor of French Vogue, introduced Saint Laurent to designer Christian Dior, a giant in the fashion world. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_10

"Dior fascinated me," Saint Laurent later recalled. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_11

"I couldn't speak in front of him. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_12

He taught me the basis of my art. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_13

Whatever was to happen next, I never forgot the years I spent at his side." Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_14

Under Dior's tutelage, Saint Laurent's style continued to mature and gain even more notice. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_15

Personal life and career Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_1

Young designer Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_2

In 1953, Saint Laurent submitted three sketches to a contest for young fashion designers organized by the International Wool Secretariat. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_16

Saint Laurent won first place. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_17

Subsequently, he was invited to attend the awards ceremony held in Paris in December of that same year. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_18

During his stay in Paris, Saint Laurent met Michel de Brunhoff (who was then editor-in-chief of the French edition of Vogue magazine and a connection to his father). Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_19

De Brunhoff, known by some as a considerate person who encouraged new talent, was impressed by the sketches that Saint Laurent brought with him and suggested he should intend to become a fashion designer. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_20

Saint Laurent would eventually consider a course of study at the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, the council which regulates the haute couture industry and provides training to its employees. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_21

Saint Laurent followed his advice and, leaving Oran for Paris after graduation, began his studies there and eventually graduated as a star pupil. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_22

Later, that same year, he entered the International Wool Secretariat competition again and won, beating out his friend Fernando Sánchez and young German student Karl Lagerfeld. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_23

Shortly after his win, he brought a number of sketches to de Brunhoff who recognised close similarities to sketches he had been shown that morning by Christian Dior. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_24

Knowing that Dior had created the sketches that morning and that the young man could not have seen them, de Brunhoff sent him to Dior, who hired him on the spot. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_25

Although Dior recognised his talent immediately, Saint Laurent spent his first year at the House of Dior on mundane tasks, such as decorating the studio and designing accessories. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_26

Eventually, however, he was allowed to submit sketches for the couture collection; with every passing season, more of his sketches were accepted by Dior. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_27

In August 1957, Dior met with Saint Laurent's mother to tell her that he had chosen Saint Laurent to succeed him as a designer. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_28

His mother later said that she had been confused by the remark, as Dior was only 52 years old at the time. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_29

Both she and her son were surprised when in October of that year Dior died at a health spa in northern Italy of a massive heart attack. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_30

In 1957, Saint Laurent found himself at age 21 the head designer of the House of Dior. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_31

His spring 1958 collection almost certainly saved the enterprise from financial ruin; the straight line of his creations, a softer version of Dior's New Look, catapulted him to international stardom with what would later be known as the "trapeze dress”. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_32

Others, included in the collection, were dresses with a narrow shoulder and flared gently at the bottom. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_33

At that time, he shortened his surname to Saint Laurent because the international press found his hyphenated triple name difficult to express. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_34

His fall 1958 collection was not greeted with the same level of approval as his first collection and later collections for the House of Dior featuring hobble skirts and beatnik fashions were savaged by the press. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_35

In 1959, he was chosen by Farah Diba, who was a student in Paris, to design her wedding dress for her marriage to the Shah of Iran. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_36

In 1960, Saint Laurent found himself conscripted to serve in the French Army during the Algerian War of Independence. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_37

Alice Rawsthorn writes that there was speculation at the time that Marcel Boussac, the owner of the House of Dior and a powerful press baron, had put pressure on the government not to conscript Saint Laurent in 1958 and 1959, but after the disastrous 1958 season, reversed course and asked that the designer be conscripted so that he could be replaced. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_38

Conscription, illness and independence Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_3

Saint Laurent was in the military for 20 days before the stress of hazing by fellow soldiers led to him being admitted to a military hospital, where he received news that he had been fired from Dior. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_39

This exacerbated his condition, and he was transferred to Val-de-Grâce military hospital, where he was given large doses of sedatives and psychoactive drugs, and subjected to electroshock therapy. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_40

Saint Laurent himself traced the origin of both his mental problems and his drug addictions to this time in hospital. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_41

After his release from the hospital in November 1960, Saint Laurent sued Dior for breach of contract and won. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_42

After a period of convalescence, he and his partner, industrialist Pierre Bergé, started their own fashion house Yves Saint Laurent YSL with funds from American millionaire J. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_43 Mack Robinson. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_44

The couple split romantically in 1976 but remained business partners. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_45

In the 1960s and 1970s, the firm popularized fashion trends such as the beatnik look, safari jackets for men and women, tight trousers, tall, thigh-high boots, and arguably the most famous classic tuxedo suit for women in 1966, Le Smoking. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_46

The 1965 Mondrian collection was particularly renowned. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_47

Saint Laurent also started mainstreaming the idea of wearing silhouettes from the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_48

Yves Saint Laurent brought in new changes to the fashion industry in the 60s and the 70s. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_49

The French designer opened his Pret-a-Porter House YSL Rive Gauche in 1967 where he was starting to shift his focus from Haute Couture to Ready-to-wear. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_50

One of the purposes was to provide a wider range of fashionable styles being available to choose from in the market as they were affordable and cheaper. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_51

He was the first French couturier to come out with a full prêt-à-porter (ready-to-wear) line, although Alicia Drake credits this move with Saint Laurent's wish to democratize fashion; others point out that other couture houses were preparing prêt-à-porter lines at the same time – the House of Yves Saint Laurent merely announced its line first. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_52

The first of the company's Rive Gauche stores, which sold the prêt-à-porter line, opened on the rue de Tournon in the 6th arrondissement of Paris, on 26 September 1966. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_53

The first customer was Catherine Deneuve. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_54

He ended up doing many costumes for her in films such as Heartbeat, Mississippi Mermaid, and Love to Eternity. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_55

Many of his collections were positively received by both his fans and the press, such as the autumn 1965 collection, which introduced Le Smoking tailored tuxedo suit. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_56

Other collections raised controversy, such as his spring 1971 collection, which was inspired by 1940s fashion. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_57

Some felt it romanticized the German occupation of France during World War II, which he did not experience, while others felt it brought back the unattractive utilitarianism of the time. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_58

The French newspaper France Soir called the spring 1971 collection "Une grande farce!" Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_59

During the 1960s and 1970s, Saint Laurent was considered one of Paris's "jet set". Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_60

He was often seen at clubs in France and New York City, such as Regine's and Studio 54, and was known to be both a heavy drinker and a frequent user of cocaine. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_61

When he was not actively supervising the preparation of a collection, he spent time at his villa in Marrakech, Morocco. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_62

In the late 1970s, he and Bergé bought a neo-gothic villa, Château Gabriel in Benerville-sur-Mer, near Deauville, France. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_63

Yves Saint Laurent was a great admirer of Marcel Proust who had been a frequent guest of Gaston Gallimard, one of the previous owners of the villa. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_64

When they bought Château Gabriel, Saint Laurent and Bergé commissioned Jacques Grange to decorate it with themes inspired by Proust's Remembrance of Things Past. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_65

The prêt-à-porter line became extremely popular with the public if not with the critics and eventually earned many times more for Saint Laurent and Bergé than the haute couture line. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_66

However, Saint Laurent, whose health had been precarious for years, became erratic under the pressure of designing two haute couture and two prêt-à-porter collections every year. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_67

He increasingly turned to alcohol and drugs. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_68

At some shows, he could barely walk down the runway at the end of the show, and he had to be supported by models. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_69

After a disastrous 1987 prêt-à-porter show in New York City, which featured US$100,000 jeweled casual jackets only days after the "Black Monday" stock market crash, he turned over the responsibility of the prêt-à-porter line to his assistants. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_70

Although the line remained popular with his fans, it was soon dismissed as "boring" by the press. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_71

Later life Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_4

In 1983, Saint Laurent became the first living fashion designer to be honored by the Metropolitan Museum of Art with a solo exhibition. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_72

In 2001, he was awarded the rank of Commander of the Légion d'Honneur by French President Jacques Chirac. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_73

Saint Laurent retired in 2002 and became increasingly reclusive, living at his homes in Normandy and Morocco with his pet French Bulldog Moujik. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_74

He also created a foundation with Bergé in Paris to trace the history of the house of YSL, complete with 15,000 objects and 5,000 pieces of clothing. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_75

A favorite among his female clientele, Saint Laurent had numerous muses that inspired his work. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_76

Chief among these was Victoire Doutreleau along with Mounia – his oft used "bride" and 'Porgy and Bess' thematic couture-garment model and frequent YSL cover-model in Women's Wear Daily and French Vogue. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_77

Among his other muses were Loulou de la Falaise, the daughter of a French marquis and an Anglo-Irish fashion model; Somali supermodel Iman, whom he once described as his "dream woman"; Betty Catroux, the half-Brazilian daughter of an American diplomat and wife of a French decorator; French actress Catherine Deneuve; Dutch actress Talitha Pol-Getty; Nicole Dorier, a YSL top model in 1978–83, who became one of his assistants in organizing his runway shows and, later, the "memory" of his house when it became a museum; Guinean-born Senegalese supermodel Katoucha Niane; Togolese-born supermodel Rebecca Ayoko and supermodel Laetitia Casta, who was the bride in his shows in 1997–2002. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_78

In 2007, he was awarded the rank of Grand officier de la Légion d'honneur by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_79

Death Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_5

Saint Laurent died on 1 June 2008 of brain cancer at his residence in Paris. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_80

According to The New York Times, a few days prior, he and Bergé had been joined in a same-sex civil union known as a Pacte civil de solidarité (PACS) in France. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_81

When Saint Laurent was diagnosed as terminal, with only one or two weeks left to live, Bergé and the doctor mutually decided that it would be better for him not to know of his impending death. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_82

Bergé said, "I have the belief that Yves would not have been strong enough to accept that." Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_83

He was given a Catholic funeral at Église Saint-Roch in Paris. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_84

The funeral attendees included former queen of Iran Farah Pahlavi, Bernadette Chirac, Catherine Deneuve, and President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_85

His body was cremated, and his ashes were scattered in Marrakech, Morocco, in the Majorelle Garden, a residence and botanical garden that he owned with Bergé since 1980 and often visited to find inspiration and refuge. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_86

Bergé said at the funeral service: "But I also know that I will never forget what I owe you and that one day I will join you under the Moroccan palms" (translated from the French). Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_87

Legacy Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_6

In February 2009, an auction of 733 items was held by Christie's at the Grand Palais, ranging from paintings by Picasso to ancient Egyptian sculptures. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_88

Saint Laurent and Bergé began collecting art in the 1950s; before the sale, Bergé commented that the decision to sell the collection was taken because, without Saint Laurent, "it has lost the greater part of its significance", with the proceeds proposed for the creation of a new foundation for AIDS research. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_89

Before the sale commenced, the Chinese government tried to stop the sale of two of twelve bronze statue heads taken from the Old Summer Palace in China during the Second Opium War. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_90

A French judge dismissed the claim and the sculptures, heads of a rabbit and of a rat, sold for €15,745,000. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_91

However, the anonymous buyer revealed himself to be Cai Mingchao, a representative of the PRC's National Treasures Fund, and claimed that he would not pay for them on "moral and patriotic grounds". Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_92

The heads remained in Bergé's possession until acquired by François Pinault, owner of many luxury brands including Yves Saint Laurent. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_93

He then donated them to China in a ceremony on 29 June 2013. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_94

On the first day of the sale, Henri Matisse's painting Les coucous, tapis bleu et rose broke the previous world record set in 2007 for a Matisse work and sold for 32 million euros. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_95

The record-breaking sale realized 342.5 million euro (£307 million). Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_96

The subsequent auction, 17–20 November, included 1,185 items from the couple's Normandy villa and while not as impressive as the first auction, featured the designer's last Mercedes-Benz car and his Hermès luggage. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_97

Forbes rated Saint Laurent the top-earning dead celebrity in 2009. Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_sentence_98

In popular culture Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_7

On film Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_8

Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_unordered_list_0

  • 2002: David Teboul's Yves Saint Laurent: His Life and TimesYves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_0_0
  • 2002: Yves Saint Laurent: 5 Avenue Marceau 75116 ParisYves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_0_1
  • 2009: Pierre Thoretton's L'Amour FouYves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_0_2
  • 2014: Yves Saint LaurentYves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_0_3
  • 2014: Saint LaurentYves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_0_4

Television Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_9

Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_unordered_list_1

  • 1965: Appeared on 25 October as a "mystery guest" on the American television game show What's My Line.Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_item_1_5

Books Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_10

Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_unordered_list_2

See also Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_section_11

Yves Saint Laurent (designer)_unordered_list_3


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yves Saint Laurent (designer).