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Balmain is a French fashion house that was founded by Pierre Balmain.

In the period following World War II, Pierre Balmain was “a king of French fashion” and outfitted stars including Ava Gardner and Brigitte Bardot and the Nicaraguan first lady Hope Portocarrero.His most famous client was Queen Sirikit of Thailand. After Pierre Balmain’s death in 1982, the house was led by Erik Mortensen, described by Vogue as Pierre Balmain’s “right hand.” Oscar de la Renta led the house between 1993 and 2002. Under Pierre Balmain, Mortensen, and de la Renta, the house was known for its classic, luxurious designs.Until 2011, the house was led by designer Christophe Decarnin, whose vision for the house is more modern and edgier. In April 2011, the fashion house announced that Decarnin was succeeded by Olivier Rousteing.

Around 2008 and 2009, the clothing line became extremely popular both among fashion magazines, runways and celebrities.[citation needed] His 2010 collection, shown during Paris fashion week, was said to be “totally retro” and “[brought] back the glitz and glitter of the 1970s disco era.”
Balmain’s father, who died when the future designer was seven years old, was the owner of a wholesale drapery business. His mother and her sisters operated a fashion boutique. Balmain studied architecture at the École des Beaux-Arts, but did not complete his studies. He spent his time there designing dresses. While attending the Ecole des Beaux Arts, Balmain went to Molyneux, who promised to give him a trial. Balmain then left his architectural studies to work for the fashion designer Edward Molyneux, for whom he worked from 1934 until 1939. He joined Lucien Lelong after World War II and opened his own fashion house in 1945. The house showcased long bell-shaped skirts with small waists – a line which later became popular as Dior’s New Look. In 1951 he opened branches in the United States selling ready-to-wear clothes. During the 1950s, Balmain popularized the stole for day as well as evening wear and created a vogue for sheath dresses beneath jackets. His talent as a designer lay in his ability to make simple, tailored suits as well as grand evening gowns, all with the same aesthetic of slender and elegant lines. Balmain also designed the iconic uniform of the Singapore Airlines Singapore Girl, loosely based on the traditional Indonesian kebaya.

Balmain also created perfumes, including Vent Vert (1947), his first successful scent and one of the best-selling perfumes of the late 1940s and early 1950s, Jolie Madame (1953), Ivoire (1979), and Eau d’Amazonie (2006). His first perfume, launched in 1947, bore his company’s Phone Number, Elysées 64-83.

Balmain was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Costume Design and won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Costume Design for Happy New Year (1980). Additional Broadway theatre credits include costumes for Sophia Loren in The Millionairess (1960) and Josephine Baker for her eponymous 1964 revue. He also was a costume designer for 16 films, including the Brigitte Bardot vehicle And God Created Woman, and designed on-screen wardrobes for the actresses Vivien Leigh and Mae West. He made a lot of dresses for Dalida.


  Frank Gehry – Interior designer


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Frank Owen Gehry, CC (born Frank Owen Goldberg; February 28, 1929) is a Canadian-American Pritzker Prize-winning architect based in Los Angeles.

His buildings, including his private residence, have become tourist attractions. His works are cited as being among the most important works of contemporary architecture in the 2010 World Architecture Survey, which led Vanity Fair to label him as “the most important architect of our age”.

Gehry’s best-known works include the titanium-covered Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain; MIT Ray and Maria Stata Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts; Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles; Experience Music Project in Seattle; Weisman Art Museum in Minneapolis; Dancing House in Prague; the Vitra Design Museum and the museum MARTa Herford in Germany; the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto; the Cinémathèque française in Paris; and 8 Spruce Street in New York City. But it was his private residence in Santa Monica, California, which jump-started his career, lifting it from the status of “paper architecture”—a phenomenon that many famous architects have experienced in their formative decades through experimentation almost exclusively on paper before receiving their first major commission in later years. Gehry is also the designer of the future
“my mother thought I was a dreamer, I wasn’t gonna amount to anything. It was my father who thought I was just reticent to do things. He would push me.”

He was given the Hebrew name “Ephraim” by his grandfather but only used it at his bar mitzvah.

In 1947 Gehry moved to California, got a job driving a delivery truck, and studied at Los Angeles City College, eventually to graduate from the University of Southern California’s School of Architecture. According to Gehry: “I was a truck driver in L.A., going to City College, and I tried radio announcing, which I wasn’t very good at. I tried chemical engineering, which I wasn’t very good at and didn’t like, and then I remembered. You know, somehow I just started racking my brain about, “What do I like?” Where was I? What made me excited? And I remembered art, that I loved going to museums and I loved looking at paintings, loved listening to music. Those things came from my mother, who took me to concerts and museums. I remembered Grandma and the blocks” qouted Frank gehry.

Post 5 – Tommy Hilfiger

Tommy Hilfiger – a denim legend

Tommy logo

At the age of 18 rather than furthering his education, Tommy started to work in retail.  He went to New York City to buy jeans and bell-bottom pants, which he customised and resold at Brown’s, a local downtown Elmira store.  Tommy opened his own store (The People’s Place) in downtown Elmira. After seven years, The People’s Place went bankrupt, Hilfiger was 25.

the people place

Hilfiger continued designing and eventually caught the eye of a businessman Mohan Muriani who was looking to launch a mens line. With Muriani’s financial support Tommy introduced his first signature collection in 1985.

Store window The relaxed, youthful attitude of his first designs has remained a distinctive hallmark throughout all of Hilfiger’s subsequent collections.  For 25 years, Tommy Hilfiger has brought classic, cool, American apparel to consumers around the world. His designs give time-honored classics a fresh look, and his discerning taste has provided the foundation for the growth of a global brand.

beach TH

As Principal Designer, Hilfiger has guided the Tommy Hilfiger Group to become one of very few globally recognized designer brands offering a wide range of apparel and accessories.


Post 6: Interior Designer- Antoni Gaudi


Antoni Gaudi was born 25 June 1852 and died of an accidental death on June 10 1926.  Gaudi was a visionary of his time in design and architecture where he had graduated as an architect in 1878  in Spain. That year Gaudi had showcased some of his produced works at the Paris World’s Fair which impressed a patron enough to lead him to work on the Guell Estate and Palace. Then in 1883 he was charged with the construction of a Barcelona Cathedral called The Basilica Sagrada Familia. The pre-existing plans of the church were tossed out and he replaced them with his own unique style.


By 1902 his designs had truly begun to defy the conventional stylistic classification, and he had created a structure known as equilibrated, they were able to stand without the need of internal bracing and or external buttressing.


His works reflected his very individual and distinctive style. They boasted a nature-based organic life form. Composed with juxtapositions of geometric masses and animating the surfaces with patterned bricks or stone, bright ceramic tiles and floral or reptilian metalwork. On the seven properties Gaudi built he had total free reign in the design of the gardens, sculptures and all decorative arts and architecture.

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His seven buildings are named: Parque Güell; Palacio Güell; Casa Mila; Casa Vicens; Gaudí’s work on the Nativity façade and Crypt of La Sagrada Familia; Casa Batlló; Crypt in Colonia Güell. They remain as standing  as monuments of his eclectic creativity dotted about Barcelona.

Over the years Gaudi became increasingly pious, and after 1910 he had abandoned nearly all other work to focus purely on the Sagrada Familia, where he could live and breath onsite and sleep in its workshop.Giving the nickname “Gods Architect”. The cathedral was still unfinished at the time of his death, and now has a target date for completion of this project of 2026 to mark the 100 year anniversary of his passing.


Post 5 – Alex Perry, Fashion Designer

Alex Perry

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Alex Perry was born in Sydney, Australia. Alex Perry is an Australian fashion designer, he’s been particularly noted for his designs in women’s wear.

In 1984 Alex graduated from East Sydney Technical College, he worked as a model agent representing Australian models for international modelling agencies.

Alex’s first atelier (studio) was opened in 1992, creating gowns, corsets and sheaths. These gowns were photographed by Vogue Australia, and then became the Alex Perry’s trademark signature in his first editorial shoot.

In 1994 Perry relocated his salon to Double Bay, Sydney, where he built up his clientele to include high profile celebrities, social identities and personalities.

Alex Perry was a designer at the inaugural Mercedes Australian Fashion Week held in May 1995, and has shown collections each year. Over the past eleven years the Alex Perry fashion shows evolved into what has been described as “the most glamorous show of the week”.

Models featured in Alex Perry’s runway shows, such as Linda Evangelista, Megan Gale, Miranda Kerr, Kate Fischer, Alyssa Sutherland, Nicole Trunfio and most recently Lily Cole.

In 1998 Alex launched his first “ready to wear” collection. In May 2002, Alex launched his Sydney salon at The Strand Arcade. Featuring stilettos, jewelled clutch handbags and bijoux earrings for evening and bridal, Alex’s debut accessories collection was launched in 2006.

In the last couple of years Alex Perry has started making designer sunglasses and glasses for Specsavers.,3

Theirry Mugler – Fashion Design

“The prophet of Futurism”, as he has been referred to, Thierry Mugler is an instinctive designer who never looks for inspiration, who strongly feels that his clothing is ‘modernistic’ and not ‘futuristic’. 

Born in Strasbourg, France on 21 December 1948 Thierry Mugler is a fashion designer, photographer, and creator of a fashion design company of the same name. Trained as a ballet dancer, he also studied design and created garments for friends. He moved to Paris in 1970 and worked as a window-dresser while building a reputation. He founded his label for women in 1974, and began designing for men in 1978.

Mugler’s work over the next two decades had a unique style that was very much of its time: it was strong, angular, sometimes almost cruel. Shoulders were wide and padded; waists were wasp-like. Prints were banished: Mugler’s clothes came in solid, dominating colours. Collars had exaggerated points, or flamelike cutouts. The insect kingdom was a constant influence, as were the ladies and gentlemen of film noir.Image


Mugler’s fashion style did not survive the 1990s, though vintage versions of his clothes are still popular on auction sites like eBay. Owned since 1997 by the French cosmetics and skincare company Clarins, Thierry Mugler Inc. is now mostly known for its perfume division. The couture division was closed in 2003 due to increasing losses. All Thierry Mugler ready-to-wear is now produced under license agreements, as is a line of eyeglasses. Mugler’s fashion style did not survive the 1990s, though vintage versions of his clothes are still popular on auction sites like eBay. Owned since 1997 by the French cosmetics and skincare company Clarins, Thierry Mugler Inc. is now mostly known for its perfume division. The couture division was closed in 2003 due to increasing losses. All Thierry Mugler ready-to-wear is now produced under license agreements, as is a line of eyeglasses.thierry-mugler-alien-2-piece-gift-set-perfume

He collaborated with the Cirque du Soleil in 2002, a group which performs all over the world. He directed “Extravaganza”, one of the scenes of Zumanity, but also created all the costumes and the identity of the characters in the show, which ran for several years at theNew York Hotel in Las Vegas.


In 2009, Thierry Mugler worked as artistic advisor to singer Beyoncé. He created the costumes for her “I Am… World Tour” and gave his artistic vision to the staging, lighting, the decorations and the choreography.


Zaha Hadid – Interior Design

“There is a discourse between architects and designers. This may be privy to those people and may not affect the public for a long time (in built form), but it’s important for that research to take place because eventually it does have a trickling effect. So that’s what really drives me.”


Born in Baghdad, she studied at the Architectural Association in London and was a partner in the Office of Metropolitan Architecture with Rem Koolhaas. Heading over 250 people strong firm, Zaha Hadid Architects, headquartered in London, she ranked 69th on the Forbes list of ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women’ in 2008. As well as creating architecture the architect is a celebrated painter, designer of furniture and interior products and fittings such as bowls and chandeliers. Zaha Hadid is an architect who consistently pushes the boundaries of architecture and urban design. Her work experiments with spatial quality, extending and intensifying existing landscapes in the pursuit of a visionary aesthetic that encompasses all fields of design, ranging from urban scale through to products, interiors and furniture. She advocates a simultaneous engagement in practice, teaching and research, in the pursuit of an uncompromising commitment to modernism. Zaha Hadid’s style is boldly contemporary, organic and innovative. The architect designs through new technology and materials and in this process, never does ordinary.


Zaha Hadid characterises her architecture as expressing a sense of motion. It is concerned with composing intersecting paths, routes and volumes in forms that are dynamic rather than static; like a controlled explosion. She attributes her inspiration to landscape, topography, sedimentology and geological patterns. Hadid is also influenced by modern infrastructure, taking inspiration from the language of highway engineering. The bundling and separating of motorways and intersections served as a visual precedent for few of her projects. Another important aspect of Hadid’s vision is her interest in the rigorous interface between architecture, landscape and geology as she integrates natural and human-made systems that lead her to experiment with video, digital imaging and physical modelling. Such a process often results in unexpected and dynamic architectural forms moulded by the realities of site and building requirements. She combines her early experiences and inspiration from nature and fuses them with technology to create avant-garde architecture.


In 17 February 2010 for her inaugural exhibition in the Gulf, Zaha Hadid – Fluidity & Design, the Pritzker Prize winning architect presents her practice’s continued exploration and research towards a new architectural language of fluidity that encompasses all scales of design – a built manifesto informed by originality and innovation. Evolving from the demands of greater complexity and variety in contemporary society, this new language is driven by the latest advances in computational design processes and stateof- the-art fabrication technologies.


Completed projects

J. S. Bach Pavilion, Manchester International Festival Manchester, UK (2009)
Eli and Edythe Broad Museum, Michigan State University, (2008-)
CMA CGM Tower, Marseille, France, (2007-2009)
Chanel Mobile Art Pavilion (Worldwide) Tokyo, Hong Kong, New York, London, Paris, Moscow, (2006-2008)
Tondonia Winery Pavilion Haro, Spain (2001-2006)
Bridge Pavilion Zaragoza, Spain (2008)
Cyprus: Eleftheria square, redesign, (2007)
Nordkettenbahn (cable car) Innsbruck, Austria (2007)
sfasf at the Victoria Hospital Kirkcaldy, Scotland (2006)
High-speed train station of Afragola  Afragola, Italy (2006)
BMW Central Building Leipzig, Germany (2005)
Ordrupgaard annexe Copenhagen, Denmark  (2005)
Phaeno Science Centre Wolfsburg, Germany (2005)
Bergisel Ski Jump Innsbruck, Austria (2002)
Hoenheim-North Terminus & Car Park Hoenheim, France (2001)
Rosenthal Centre for Contemporary Art Cincinnati, Ohio (1994)
Vitra Fire Station Weil am Rhein, Germany (1994)

Ongoing and future projects
Napoli Afragola railway station, Italy (completion delayed to 2011)
Nuragic and Contemporary art museum (2006) (under construction), Cagliari, Italy
Mandarin Oriental Dellis Cay, Villa D (2012) (private home under construction), Dellis Cay, Turks & Caicos Islands
Riverside Museum (2007-2011) (projected) development of Glasgow Transport Museum, Scotland
London Aquatics Centre, London, UK, (2008-2013), a 17,500-seat venue for the 2012 Summer Olympics
MAXXI (National Museum of the 21st Century Arts) in Rome
Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre in Baku, Azerbaijan