Sam Haskins, best known for his nude photography and “Cowboy Kate,” died last Thursday in his home in Bowral, Australia. He was 83.
Haskins’ son Ludwig said his father had become depressed after suffering two strokes and took his own life.
Ludwig Haskins noted that, prior to falling ill, his father had enjoyed his last “rock star moment” in New York a few months ago, with the success of his “Fashion Etcetera” book launch and exhibition at Milk Gallery. The late photographer worked with Tommy Hilfiger earlier this year on a special edition of the book, a retrospective of five decades of Haskins’ work. It was his first joint publishing project with a fashion designer and first book in more than two decades.
“As a rule, similar projects seldom evolved into such a broad collaboration as this one with Tommy Hilfiger,” Haskins told WWD in June. “My many prior undertakings with paper mills, camera manufacturers and such usually did not amount to much more than producing a calendar and an exhibition. I had simultaneous offers for collaboration on this project. Since I have admired Tommy’s clothing for many years and his proposal was so overwhelmingly warm and human, there was no contest.”
Haskins said his son had persuaded him to take a retrospective look at his archive around the theme of fashion and style, and this became an important factor in the book’s content, which is a combination of digitally remastered black-and-white and color photographs from the early Sixties onward.
“Sam influenced generations of photographers, designers and artists; his art captured a genuine love for women and beauty,” Hilfiger said Thursday. “There will only ever be one Sam Haskins, and I am honored to have worked with him and to celebrate his last masterpiece, ‘Fashion Etcetera.’”
Haskins reveled in the collaboration with Hilfiger but his relationship with the fashion world wasn’t always a smooth one. Countless fashion photographers copied his work (a fact that irked Haskins until the end); however, in 2001, he was rediscovered by the genre and began shooting for magazines including French Vogue, Allure, New York, Harper’s Bazaar and Le Monde.
Just a week prior to his death, Haskins had worked to produce a series of limited edition prints that are now on sale at the Milk Gallery stand at the Art Basel fair.
Ludwig Haskins said a service has not yet been planned. Haskins is also survived by his wife, Alida, and another son, Konrad.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast