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In anticipation of Jean Touitou’s latest A.P.C. flagship store in New York City, the French-Tunisian had some colorful commentary to share. The always enigmatic designer touched upon celebrity culture in fashion, the association of the Chinese as fascists and why he won’t be jumping to show in China any time soon. A selection of quotes can be seen below with the full article seen here.
Photography: Craig McDean
“If you’re a young actress, it’s now expected that once you start making it you’ll receive a bag from Chanel. It’s become a rite of passage. And it works, it’s huge publicity for them. But at some point what’s sad about it is that the very famous Chanel bag 2.55—which I really love, my grandmother had one and my mother had one—is all over the place. I can’t look at them anymore.”
“It seems the people who run the luxury industry have lost all sense of luxury. Céline in ready-to-wear I think still has a sense of luxury. But if you go to Hermès and you ask the salesgirl for a notebook in box-calf, she won’t know what you’re talking about. It’s a type of leather and if you work at Hermès you should know it like runs in your veins. And they only have ugly colors.”
“The Chinese can manufacture well, but I think they are the new fascists. I have to face it everyday. Since they have all this cash, they buy up raw materials, all the commodities, so if you want to buy cotton it’s already been bought. If I want ten tons of cotton from Egypt, the guy will say, “I’m sorry, it’s all sold. You have to talk to Mr. Chong.” And of course Mr. Chong has raised the price. It’s very bad. It’s like a war. It’s like we’ve entered an economic war. I’m not kidding. It’s not a conspiracy theory.”
“I don’t know why designers want to show big spectacles in China. You go there and you get so depressed. There’s no culture, nothing. The streets are ugly and people do not know how to dress themselves. You go to India and you find all these inspiring people to look at. You go to China and want to kill yourself. That’s not very nice to say but those people are taking over the resources of the planet and we cannot do or say anything because they have all the cash. I’m a bit hysterical over China, but I’m sure I’m right. I’m committed now to wearing Scottish knitwear. I consider it a political statement. It’s not even that much more expensive than Chinese knits and it lasts a lot longer.”