This story first appeared in the September 15, 2016 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The model and entrepreneur fronts a new campaign revealing Vaccarello’s first designs for the storied French house ahead of his runway debut for Saint Laurent on Sept. 27, the first day of Paris Fashion Week.
Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin captured Rubik posing on a bridge straddling the Right and Left Banks of Paris. In one image, she is dressed in a plunging, densely embroidered bodysuit topped with a denim blouson — items from the spring collection.
Sharing the black-and-white image exclusively with WWD ahead of its release in October magazines, and an outdoor campaign in New York breaking Saturday, the brand characterized Rubik as “the face of the new Saint Laurent woman.”
She portrays “a free, hedonist and elusive woman, captured in the early hours of the morning on the wharfs of the Seine,” according to the fashion house, which describes her wardrobe as “juxtaposing leather, jewels and lace, drawing a femininity without frills, rooted in paradoxes, a sensuality tied to the body.”
Lamsweerde and Matadin also produced a video with Rubik that is to debut Sept. 27 on YSL’s Instagram page and web site. An outdoor campaign is planned for Paris beginning Sept. 28.
Since being named creative director of Saint Laurent in April, succeeding Hedi Slimane after a fruitful four-year tenure, Vaccarello made a clean sweep of YSL’s Instagram account and launched an image campaign by American artist and fashion photographer Collier Schorr showing 15 new faces and lithe bodies, but no clothes.
Vaccarello, 36, has long considered Rubik a muse and confidante.
In an interview with WWD at the time, she lauded Vaccarello’s precise vision and working methods.
“I call it intelligent fashion because every single detail, including the way the clothes fall, is done by design,” Rubik said. “It’s quite sharp, and there’s a touch of masculinity in his designs. There’s this sexiness in the way he interprets masculinity for women.”
Born in Brussels, Vaccarello studied sculpture at La Cambre, and came onto the international fashion radar in 2006 when he won first place at the Hyères International Festival of Fashion and Photography with a collection inspired by Italian porn star La Cicciolina. He went on to work at Fendi and in 2009 launched his namesake collection in Paris. Two years later, he scooped the ANDAM fashion award.
Gianni Versace and Yves Saint Laurent are among his design icons, while movies, music and contemporary art feed his ideas, according to Rubik.