Thierry Mugler, Fashion Designer, 1948-2022

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Thierry Mugler, outré A French designer who wore a naked mermaid gown with sequins on David Bowie in the 1979 music video “Boys Keep Swing” was known for his love of fetish and fantasy. His trademark silhouette blade-like shoulders and bee waist helped define the power dressing of the 1980s and influenced designers such as Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga’s creative director Demna Gvasalia.

Mugler, who died at the age of 73, sent Hollywood and porn stars to the runway. His designs were innovative and transportable, using materials such as latex, rubber, vinyl and metal that were previously outside the norms of luxury. He molded a female into Venus, a robot, an insect, a ruler, and Botticelli.

His show was legendary. 20th Anniversary Auto Couture celebration Held at Cirque d’Hiver in Paris in 1995, it was an hour-long spectacle with Alfred Hitchcock star actress Tippi Hedren. bird, Flower decoration with black feathers. Featuring striptease by celebrity Patty Hearst, it ended with a performance by singer James Brown. Such displays help promote Mugler’s best-selling Angel fragrances and are the scent of cotton candy that rebuked the light and gender fragrances that dominated the market when it was launched in 1992.

The model presents a suit inspired by black insects as part of Thierry Mugler’s Spring / Summer 1997 high fashion show. He shaped women into robots, insects and rulers © Reuters

Sandrine GroslierHaving worked with Magler for 27 years, he described him as “interesting, passionate, and sometimes engrossing,” “a genius do-it-yourself artist whose measurements weren’t part of his vocabulary.” I expressed it as.

Manfred Thierry Mugler was born in 1948 in Strasbourg, France. His father was a doctor and his mother was the most graceful woman in town. As a teenager, he danced ballet at the Ran National Opera and spent his free time in the cinema.

He launched his own ready-to-wear label Café de Paris in 1973. Its sharp and architectural lines contrasted with the folklore fashion that was celebrated in Paris and Milan at the time. “I wanted to make this very pure Parisian silhouette: a small black suit, a trench coat, a black dress, a siren dress,” he said. WWD in last year’s interview.. “It was all about a very accurate and streamlined silhouette that was very strongly influenced by dance.”

Mugler was not a favorite of fashion commentators, and although he claimed that his design empowered women, he was often accused of worshiping the female body. “In the end, society proved that I was right,” Mugler said in the same interview. “All I have shown is that some papers described as pornography, sexists, or racists are now mainstream.”

“He was very misunderstood at the time. His work was too innovative and avant-garde,” says Thierry Maxim Lorio, curator of the retrospective exhibition currently on display. Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris.. “He invented a truly timeless, historically unreferenced fashion. This is very rare.”

French fashion designer Thierry Mugler celebrates with a model after a show in New York in 1980. His design helped define the decade.

Painted in New York in 1980 at the height of his fame. Thierry Mugler’s design helped define the decade © Allan Tannenbaum / Getty

Mugler was in other ways ahead of the curve. He did not use fur or exotic skin. He designed and softened a magnificent faux fur coat joined with silk chiffon and sewed a small rectangle of black leather that imitated a crocodile. “There was no way I could torture an animal for a piece of clothing,” he said. He has shot his own brand campaigns for decades.

At the height of his fame, in the late 1980s, he was rang for a top job at Christian Dior — the role given to Gianfranco Ferré. “Maybe I had too much personality in the job,” he told the interviewer.

Mugler retired from the runway in 2002. Around that time, Clarins, a French cosmetology conglomerate that acquired his company in 1997, closed its fashion division. He was fascinated by luxury fashion and a growing obsession with money and power, but continued to work on fragrances. He designed Cirque du Soleil costumes for the 2010 “I Am … World Tour”.

After selling his name to Clarins, he began to go by Manfred again and grew up as a superhero through bodybuilding and plastic surgery. Interview magazine. He said his goal was to look like a sculpture by Arno Breaker.

Interest in Mugler’s work has revived in recent years. He created the work of Kim Kardashian. Latex beaded gown, 2019 At Met Gala, it seemed to drip. David Koma, creative director of the Muggler label from 2014 to 2017, describes his work as “the ultimate balance between provocation and art form.” “His groundbreaking sculptural design, unrivaled garment construction and the use of innovative materials will inspire future generations of designers.”

lauren.indvik@ft.com

Thierry Mugler, Fashion Designer, 1948-2022

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