Yves Mathieu-Saint-Laurent was born in Oran where he spent his youth, before arriving in Paris to work for Dior. Gifted designer, his influence grew in this fashion house until replacing Christian Dior at the sudden death of the designer. Yves Saint Laurent then experienced a triumph there at the age of only twenty-one, from the first “Trapeze” collection.
A few years later, he left the prestigious house on avenue Montaigne to found the fashion house that bears his name, with his companion Pierre Bergé who would not leave him until his death.
The first haute couture collection was presented in 1962; it will be followed by the Mondrian dress or the “Pop Art” collection which recall his taste for art, then The tuxedo and the pantsuit inherited from the male wardrobe, the Saharan that he transforms from a functional garment into an element chic, thigh-high boots, transparent blouses that spill so much ink in the press in the midst of a sexual revolution ... In love with all the cultures throughout his life, he is the first to hire models of African or Asian origin for his fashion shows. Modernist and in step with his time, he created in parallel to haute couture, his luxury ready-to-wear under the name “ Rive Gauche”; this will become an example for many other designers.
In the 1970s, the “Liberation” collection made an impression; thereafter, several other fashion shows pay tribute to painters, such as Matisse or Van Gogh, to his distant inspirations for other continents such as Russia with the "Opera-Ballets-Russes" collection or Asia, symbolized by the perfume Opium.
During the following decade, he presented the “Picasso” collection once again, a reference to art. During these years, the fashion house grew by the success of perfumes, cosmetics or accessories. The designer is then awarded a fashion Oscar. At the end of the 1990s, tired of designing ready-to-wear, he concentrated on haute couture and finally abandoned it in 2002. He married (pacse) with his partner Pierre Bergé in 2008, a few days before his death.
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