Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week never really was for the faint of heart. But this year, one designer in particular pushed the limits on fashion’s appropriate borders. Jean Paul Gaultier chose his Spring Couture runway show to be based off of the late, great singer, Amy Winehouse. Now, at first thought, this may have sounded like a sweet sentiment…however, the way he went about it proved to be less than impressive.
Gaultier sent models down the catwalk donning perfectly coiffed and teased beehives, moles above their lips, dramatic cat-eyeliner, and some even puffed on cigarettes as they traipsed. The show was even accompanied by an a capella version of ‘Rehab’ that some say was shy of an honorable tribute. Although he’d never met her, Gaultier stood up for his vision by stating, “Amy Winehouse was truly a fashion icon”.
Although his intentions seemed sincere, Amy’s family has spoken out against this act of tribute to their daughter. Mitch Winehouse lamented to The Sun: “to see her image lifted wholesale to sell clothes was a wrench we were not expecting or consulted on.” The family, having just lost their daughter to an alcohol overdose six months ago, was shocked and saddened at the sight of Gaultier’s exhibition. After viewing the runway spectacle, WWD reported that the show “felt at best ill-advised: a young woman who died tragically less than a year ago the fodder for an oh-so-feisty fashion show … Whatever one’s take on the motif, the clothes — though amply tricked-out and tarted-up — were most often beautiful.”
Needless to say, Jean Paul Gautier is in the hot seat for his controversial homage to Amy Winehouse.
Click through the images below to see for yourself: