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Christian Dior: The Man Who Made the World Look New Hardcover – September 26, 1996
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First published in 1993 in France, this English translation of Marie-France Pochna's biography of Christian Dior appears in time for the 50th anniversary of Dior's debut in the world of fashion and coincides with a retrospective of Dior's design work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. As a biography of the designer, Pochna's book is complete and telling, perhaps not swept up high enough in the airy realms of fashion to please devoted couture mavens but highly informative and interesting for general readers interested in Dior and his impact on the fashion industry. The business of fashion rather than the artistry of Dior's designs is where Pochna directs much of her attention. After all, the marketing and branding that Dior helped initiate was innovative, so discussions of licensing agreements and the development of designer accessories, along with Dior's youthful development and inspirations, blend into a provocative profile of this fashion great.
From Publishers Weekly
A superstitious man who collected amulets and followed astrology, Christian Dior (1905-1957) established his couture house in Paris in 1946 upon the advice of a fortune-teller who had correctly predicted that Dior's sister, a member of the French resistance deported by the Gestapo, would survive. Dior's "New Look," with its corolla skirts and narrow waists?a welcome change from drab wartime fashions and from the minimalism of Chanel and Lanvin?was an instant success. Son of a wealthy fertilizer manufacturer who went broke in the Depression, Dior, a discreet homosexual, had rebelled against his bourgeois father by embracing the artistic world of his mother, a horticulturist and expert on flowers. He opened a Parisian art gallery, exhibiting cubist and dadaist works in the 1930s. His decision to become a fashion designer came after a soul-searching trip on the island of Ibiza. An elegantly written, sparkling portrait of a pioneering arbiter of style, this candid biography reveals Dior as a spendthrift and tax evader, a tough, at times imperious boss, a captive of his own success?tormented by anxieties even in his sleep?who wasted himself in the frenzied pursuit of living like a lord to make up for years of struggle. Pochna's previous books include bios of billionaire Gianni Agnelli and fashion designer Nina Ricci. Photos.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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