Paris of Exotic Shadows (02:16)
Host Tim Blanks explores the French capital's immigrant neighborhoods that inspire avant-garde designer Jean Paul Gaultier. Despite conservative training, his sense of humor has labeled him provocative in the fashion world.
Expressing Love and Play (01:29)
French designer Philippe Stark discusses Jean Paul Gaultier's sense of humor amid a fashion industry that takes itself seriously. His eclectic influences suggest a happy childhood.
Gaultier's Happy Childhood (04:37)
The avant-garde designer grew up in a Arcueil, a modest Paris suburb. An only child, his grandmother inspired his self-confidence and positive outlook on life. His interest in fashion was sparked by Folies Bergère showgirls.
Driven to Design During Adolescence (02:17)
Jean Paul Gaultier describes his initial interest in haute couture. Childhood friend and label CEO Donald Potard recalls his ambition as a teenager—he began promoting his work to Pierre Cardin and other major houses at 17.
Inspired by the Punk Movement (01:51)
In 1970 Pierre Cardin hired Gaultier as an apprentice, where he perfected technique. After a stint with Jean Patou he rejected conventional design and launched a radical collection in the iconoclastic spirit of the mid '70s.
Breaking Design Boundaries while Having Fun (02:35)
Jean Paul Gaultier embraced fashion freedoms of the late '70s and early '80s. He participated in the avant-garde movement and challenged gender and sexuality conventions—his shows were popular for their theatrical qualities, as well as design.
Androgynous Designs (02:48)
Jean Paul Gaultier's revolutionary concept of putting men in skirts was seen as a political statement about sexual politics. Experts discuss his application of feminine styles to men; he explains he wanted to overcome gender clichés.
Fashion's Great Humanist (03:34)
Embracing cultural diversity has labeled Jean Paul Gaultier as provocative at times. He insists he doesn't use irony in his designs, but a 1993 collection inspired by rabbis was misinterpreted by Paris' Hasidic community.
Expressing a Changing World (01:44)
Jean Paul Gaultier's designs reflect contemporary society and cultural diversity. He isn't afraid to voice opinions through his collections—even if it means being labeled provocative. (Fashion Nudity)
Passion for Travel (01:33)
Visits to other countries and cultures are a theme throughout Jean Paul Gaultier's collections. The designer shares the creative process of incorporating non-Western elements.
Deep Personal Influences on Gaultier (02:09)
Gaultier's foundation in conventional dress making technique has supported his unconventional design creativity. He opened a haute couture house to fulfill his partner's request before he died—and to realize a childhood dream.
Entering the Haute Couture World (03:28)
Jean Paul Gaultier discusses his vision for presenting his first formal, custom dress collection after gaining success in his ready-to-wear lines. It was well received; we hear reactions from fans and fashion experts.
An Unpretentious Couture Designer (03:12)
Despite gaining access to the world of high fashion, Jean Paul Gaultier remains non-elitist. He has designed costumes for several films, including "The Fifth Element."
Gaultier's Faithful Tribe (01:59)
The designer's enthusiasm and love of fashion has attracted a loyal following. We hear from employees and colleagues drawn to his positive energy.
Designing for Strong Women (01:19)
Jean Paul Gaultier's humanity attracts an international clientele. He is inspired by icons representing a spirit of liberation such as Frida Kahlo, Josephine Baker and Madonna.
The Business of Fashion (02:46)
Gaultier has supplemented his flamboyant designs with profitable accessories—we see a commercial for his best-selling fragrances. He partnered with Paris institution Hermes to promote collections and finance boutiques.
Gaultier's Legacy (02:13)
Having joined the ranks of household couture names such as Yves St. Laurent, Jean Paul Gaultier has already been featured in museum exhibitions—but he isn't ready to retire yet.
Jean Paul Gaultier on Aging (00:59)
The flamboyant fashion designer is nervous about the aesthetics of growing old—but his grandparents set a good example and he looks forward to the next phase of life.
Capturing Playfulness, Elegance and Humanity (03:37)
The first serious in-house couture designer since Yves St. Laurent, Jean Paul Gaultier's youthful spirit and good humor will ensure his continued success. As he puts it, he is most interested in the people inside the clothes.
Credits: Jean Paul Gaultier: Masters of Style (00:57)
Credits: Jean Paul Gaultier: Masters of Style
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