finally, the jean paul gaultier exhibition comes to paris

The retrospective of fashion’s cheekiest designer has hit its spiritual home in the French capital.

by Oscar Heliani
31 March 2015, 12:00pm

Ellen von Unwerth, Survivants (Laetitia Casta, Vladimir McCary et Jenny Shimizu) 1993, Publié dans Interview magazine Collection Les Tatouages. Prêt-à-porter Femme printemps-été 1994 © Ellen von Unwerth.

Jean Paul Gaultier: From the sidewalk to the catwalk emerged in Montreal four years ago. After gathering over one million visitors in Brooklyn, Dallas, London, Madrid, Melbourne, Rotterdam, San Francisco and Stockholm, this eagerly awaited exhibition finally comes to Paris for four full months.

Jean-Paul Cluzel, president of Le Grand Palais, confessed: "I saw it in San Francisco and decided to host it in here and give it some more space." Indeed, it is the biggest edition ever, with more and more silhouettes coming from his more recent collections. About his dear and beloved city, the so-called enfant terrible of fashion, JPG, says: "I am so proud to show my work in my city, Paris. From my childhood with small teddy bear Nana, on whom I experimented everything, until now. It reflects who I am."

Izima Kaoru, Fez' Mysteron SS84, 1983 Collection Le Retour de l'imprimé Prêt-à-porter Femme printemps-été 1984 Chapeau par Stephen Jones pour Jean Paul Gaultier. © Hanatsubaki Magazine / Shiseido Co., Ltd. 

Speaking dolls will guide the visitor trough the exhibition telling stories about inspirations and fetish themes: saints, marine stripes, punk, tattoos, gender and corsets of course. And Catherine Deneuve's voice tells details about some iconic couture silhouettes is quite something. Muses are everywhere: Madonna, Kylie Minogue, Amanda Lear, Björk, Rossy de Palma, Farida Khelfa just to name few. Famous photographers pictured amazing looks by Jean Paul Gaultier from his own label but also during the Hermes years. Visitor will witness work by Paolo Roversi, Ellen Von Unwerth, Tim Walker, Mert & Marcus, Jean Baptiste Mondino, Steven Meisel, Sølve Sundsbø, Peter Lindbergh, Mario Testino, Inez&Vinoodh, all of which are combined in a catalogue edited by Réunion des Musées Nationaux especially for the Paris exhibition. This deep dive into Gaultier's world is a master class in fashion.

Max Abadian, Couleur Café (Herieth Paul) 2013, Publié dans le magazine Dress to Kill, 2013Robe marin en raphia crocheté, Collection You Got the Look... Alike Prêt-à-porter Femme printemps-été 2013 © Max Abadian.

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier runs till 3rd August at Le Grand Palais.

Jean Paul Gaultier
from the sidewalk to the catwalk