the Last Emperor, the Last Couturier

Valentino. I have just seen the documentary picturing a year in Emperor’s life. It was the year preceding his 45th anniversary couture show and celebration. The movie captured many private and professional moments managing to showcase Valentino as an ingenious mind, a creative master that can with no doubt be considered the last couturier.

I was left speechless and even teary-eyed in the end. I always react that way to beauty, passion, emotions, and there were plenty of those in the movie. I would recommend it to any fashion lover. The movie shows many backstage moments that stand behind a couture masterpiece.

Movie follows organisation of the 45th anniversary manifestation but there is a parallel story about how Valentino was bought by a private investor and later taken over by another investment company. This story brings us back to the very familiar stories of Gucci, Fendi, Viutton and many other fashion brands that ended up in the hands of powerful businessmen. Valentino was no different. They say, in order for the brand and the company to grow, it needs this kind of investment, fresh capital. But this capital is focused on profits and the designer is always focused on his aesthetic vision, his passion.

Valentino said that he fell in love with fashion and fashion magazines at the early age of thirteen. He said he used to dream about beautiful women, beautiful places… he was dreaming about beauty and was always drawn to it and led by it and inspired by it. Dreams such as Valentino’s or Gianni’s are not possible to come true anymore. Fashion has become a toy in the hands of powerful businessmen who decide on what shall be designed, made and sold. The magic is here but it has become commercial and shallow. I miss the good old times.

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