BOF gets an exclusive excerpt from upcoming, System magazine's interview with former Balenciaga designer, Nicholas Ghesquiere. Although it isn't the full interview, we get a better understanding behind the designer's decision to leave the house.
Noteworthy from the interview:
At what point into the job at Balenciaga did you realise you needed to wise up to the business side of the brand?
NG: Straight away. It’s part of being a creative because the vision
you have ends up in the stores. It actually makes me smile today when I
think about it because it was me who had to invent the concept of being
commercial at Balenciaga. Right from the start I wanted it to be
commercial, but the first group who owned the house didn’t have the
first notion of commerce; there was no production team. There was
Did you never go to the top of the group and ask for the support you needed?
NG: Yes, endlessly! But they didn’t understand. More than anything
else, you need people who understand fashion. There are people I’ve
worked with who have never understood how fashion works. They keep
saying they love fashion, yet they’ve never actually grasped that this
isn’t yoghurt or a piece of furniture – products in the purest sense of
the term. They just don’t understand the process at all, and so now
they’re transforming it into something much more reproducible and flat.
In spite of the increasingly stifling conditions you felt you
were operating in, were you nonetheless scared by the prospect of
NG: I just said to myself, ‘Okay, well you have to leave, you have to
cut the cord.’ But I didn’t say anything to anyone, apart from to a few
very close people, because, you know, I’ve become pretty good at
standing on my own two feet.