A beautiful surprise this morning at breakfast reading the newspaper.
This impressive piece on Azzedine Alaia in La Repubblica. Defined as the “outsider”,
it is great to see Alaia’s talent and his thinking having such a big impact in Italy too.
In 2005, longtime friend and great journalist Laurence Bénaim interviewed Yohji Yamamoto and Azzedine Alaia across the table in Azzedine’s kitchen – always the place for very interesting conversations. Here, two men with such big talent in both the creative arts and humanist values sharing their points of view and beliefs.
THE SQUARE OF THE CIRCLE
Yohji Yamamoto: Fashion consists of both commerce and creation. You need
to find the right balance, if not you cannot continue…
The difficult part is to persevere. The independent couturier is like a fossil.
Azzedine Alaia: I love my profession, not its obligations. Working to create
turnover, that blocks me.
THE BIG ART
YY: Showing something simple, like a shirt, and make sure that it’s different
from the others. See to it that the way a draped gown falls is determined by the
woman who wears it. Like the movements of the sand in the desert.
AA: In black one doesn’t notice all the cuts, but they do have a meaning.
QUESTIONS OF STYLE
YY: Confronted with a garment, I react somehow like an animal. It is more
instinctive than cerebral. I sing the same song, even if the melody
is different every time. We are ‘obsessions designers’.
AA: It is not a matter of changing from one season to the next.
It is an ongoing work, one cannot abandon it.
THE FUTURE SOFTLY
YY: With my eyes turned to the past, I walk backwards into the future.
AA: Every morning I ask myself: “What will I learn today?”.
I don’t make plans.
I live by the day. I’m in good shape or I’m not.
THE TIME THAT REMAINS, THE TIME THAT DISAPPEARS
YY: I wish I didn’t have to be there on the opening of the retrospective… I wish
they would remember me as someone who has loved women a lot and who
has slightly changed the history of fashion, or rather, the history of clothes.
AA: Retrospectives, I prefer to do them when I’m still alive. At least then I can
control the situation. I row for the dead,
but I don’t know if anyone will rowfor me.
YY: I like everything that is big in love. Even the excess.
AA: When I love, I embrace, I touch, I pinch.
One of my favorite pictures: Alaia the master, Azzedine the friend.