While you were out boozing and barbecuing and taking in the fireworks on July 4th, Jean Paul Gaultier was busy typing out an open letter to Style.com’s Tim Blanks following his less-than-stellar review of the designer’s fall 2013 couture show.
Of the show Blanks wrote: “Jean Paul Gaultier works a theme like a last nerve,” and, more scathingly, “[A] “millefeuille de mousselines” echoed Yves Saint Laurent’s way with color, as a reminder that Gaultier was once considered the one true heir to the throne of French fashion. But that was once upon a time, and that time has, sad to say, well and truly passed.” To be fair, Blanks wasn’t the only one who criticized Gaultier’s feline-inspired show. In her little write-up, the New York Times‘s Cathy Horyn wrote “[T]he technique was great, but it also feels like an old act.” Over at the Independent Alexander Fury laid into Gaultier as well, describing the show as “unfocused, messy, confusing.”
But it was Blanks who struck a nerve and inspired Gaultier to write back:
Once upon a time you liked my shows “but that time has truly passed” and I respect it. But the Tim I knew before would never have made the attacks that are more personal than proffesional [sic]. I always had girls in my shows from different social strata, treating someone as down-market is cheap.
In future, rather than be bored at my shows, you can use that time to do something else, for example brush up on your fashion history so you’ll kow that “mille feuille de mousseline” didn’t echo Saint Laurent, it was inspired by a Nina Ricci dress from 1967 in homage to Gerard Pipard who recently passed away.
If you’re nostalgic for the time when I was considered the one true heir to the throne of French fashion please buy a ticket for my exhibition now in Stockhold [sic] and soon in Brooklyn and London. Good Visit.
A former yours in fashion
Jean Paul Gaultier
That little “brush up on your fashion history” bit is quite the burn. So is Gaultier being just as catty as the looks on his couture runway or does he have cause to complain?