Monday, November 10, 2008
There is something so right about the bold swipes of vivid color and graphic shapes pictured above from Fall 1987.
YSL is one of the best and most influential designers ever. He did have his moments when he lapsed into redundancy and oddity, maybe brought on by his long time struggles with drugs, men, love and mental health....but all things considered, this man was brilliant to the end. His scope of fashion was not just about his brilliant play of color (he was the best colorist in the world), drawing from the highs and lows of society and culture and mixing and playing on them like no one before him had ever done, his amazing draping techniques, understated and over-the-top use of embellishment or his use of bold shapes.......it was also about a broad, international, inclusive view of beauty. YSL put THE BEST of all beauty in the spotlight. From the regal African beauty of Mounia to the all-American glamour of Jerry Hall, Yves saw beauty in every type. Yves always had the best of each group - the best French girl, the best African girl, the best red head, the best blonde - his world view was about beauty in all of it's diversity. His runway was always a veritable mini UN - and the girls were the ambassadors of their countries and cultures. These varied cultures also were a huge inspiration to him.
One of his favorites was also one of mine - Miss Brynja. Brynja is an Icelandic model from the 80's who was a fave of YSL, Versace, Valentino and Donna Karan, among others. She was most known for her wafer thin, long lean body, her beautiful sweetheart shaped face (cheekbones for the gods, baby) and her dark, Louise Brooks bob (apparently, she is actually a blonde). It is rumored that Brynja was also a big druggie, like many in her era. True or not, she was FIERCE. This girl could work a runway with the best of them - she was from the Dalma, Katoucha and Marpessa school of RUNWAY FEROCITY!!!
Brynja is now a jewelry designer and spiritualist. I always find it very interesting what THE GIRLS end up doing with their time. Princess Mounia became a world renowned artist...Carla Bruni is the First Lady of France...Iman and Tyra are business moguls...before her untimely and deeply saddening death, Katoucha became a writer (following in her father's footsteps) and ambassador fighting against FGM (female genital mutilation)...Beverly Johnson became a wig magnate. I love growth, reinvention, evolution and ingenuity in creating or recreating one's life.