Hubert de Givenchy has passed away in Paris on March 3, but the news were spread by his family only a few hours ago. His departure echoes the process of weakening of big innovations and elegance that characterised the whole Twentieth century. The construction of a world, where people measured themselves with obstinacy against a world that was at times adverse, but which they wanted to change for the better. In more recent times the historic Maison, after having been sold to the Lvmh group, directed by mephistophelian Bernard Arnault, has been directed by a succession of big names from the recent history of fashion: John Galliano, Alexander McQueen, Julian
McDonald, Riccardo Tisci, Clare Waight Keller. In 1991 the Palais Galliera in Paris dedicated a big exhibition to Givenchy’s incredible sartorial skill, who created dresses for the absolute divas of his time. First of them all was, of course, Audrey Hepburn, who shaped an iconic and timeless type of the perfect garment with her little black dress, the “petite robe noir”, which can be famously spotted in Breakfast at Tiffany (1961), the film based on the novel by Truman Capote and directed by Black Edward.
A perfection that was achieved thanks to a huge effort, since his tailoring work, which started in the interwar period, had to fight against the will of his family and rise far from the glamorous Parisian life. Hubert de Givenchy has first worked for Jacques Fath, a fashion designer of the French haute couture world, then for Robert Piguet, before finally approaching the eccentric Elsa Schiapparelli and Cristóbal Balenciaga. His name was immortalised by his timeless creations and a unique and perfect elegance.