His style defined a generation. And now every generation can take a look inside the creative process.
“In the fashion world, Yves Saint Laurent is kind of a pinnacle,” said curator Chiyo Ishikawa.
Now, the work of one of the 20th Century's most iconic designers is on display at the Seattle Art Museum exhibition Yves Saint Laurent: The Perfection of Style.
“I think that he was so much a part of the social fabric in the 60's and 70's and helped change the way people dressed,” said Ishikawa. “So he holds a special place in the whole pantheon of fashion designers.”
The fashion innovator elevated the industry to an art form.
“He was somebody who brought fine art into his fashion as early as 1965 with his famous Mondrian dress,” said Ishikawa. “And he did a number of collections that were inspired by the works of artists.”
And the fashion industry elevated Yves Saint Laurent to the status of celebrity and sex symbol.
“He was young and handsome. He made a point of dressing in a very beautiful way,” said Ishikawa. “And he, his social world included people like Mick Jagger and Andy Warhol. So he very much helped to propel fashion into the forefront of celebrity, which is something we now take for granted.”
He had a number of muses that he dressed regularly. Catherine Deneuve was one. He made Bianca Jagger's wedding suit.
This exhibit displays the artist's work through every stage of the creative process.
“This means we have sketches, we have working documents, we have photographs,” said Ishikawa. “And you really have a sense of what I can only call creative genius.”
Those fashions are timeless, but the exhibition Yves Saint Laurent: The Perfection of Style runs until January 8th at the Seattle Art Museum.