DRAWING ON FASHION: Azzedine Alaïa will pay tribute to the late French architect Claude Parent. The Tunisian fashion designer is hosting in his Paris gallery the exhibition “Claude Parent — Dessiner la mode” that features Parent’s fashion illustrations.
Known as the theoretician and practitioner of the “oblique function” in architecture, which is based on a tilted surface, Parent did his national service with André Courrèges and then began his career as a fashion illustrator. Parent reconnected with his first interests in the course of his friendship with Alaïa. From last summer until his death this past February, he worked with his grandson Laszlo Parent on a series of fashion drawings in ink inspired by Alaïa’s designs. They involve silver lines crossing items of clothing at an angle.
“Drawing fashion is much more than cutting through a piece of fabric to build a piece of clothing,” wrote the elder Parent in his statement about the project. “For an artist such as Alaïa, it is about setting shapes in motion, operating a shift in scale between the body and its clothing, realizing a chance fusion between two elements of daily light, and offering that sight to others, to those who live together in the whole world, without forgetting to offer a particular sight to every creation, since necessarily the definitive shape manifests itself in a limitless intervention.”
Last January and February, the couturier devoted an exhibition to the dialogue Parent had with his younger peer Jean Nouvel, based on their unrealized museum projects — the last exhibition Claude Parent was to see before he died on Feb. 27.
“Claude Parent — Dessiner la mode,” set to run at the Galerie Azzedine Alaïa from Sept. 2 to 25, will feature the original ink drawings, sketches on tracing paper and the very last pieces, unfinished. The exhibition is accompanied by a book published by Association Azzedine Alaïa, edited by Donatien Grau. It includes reproductions of all the works, Claude Parent’s statement, and contributions by Nouvel, Olivier Saillard, Carla Sozzani and Olivier Zahm.