Fashion Icon Series with Fern Mallis: Marc Jacobs
Last evening, fans and fashionistas crowded into the 92nd Street Y in New York City for a Q&A with fashion designer Marc Jacobs.
Located in NYC’s Upper East Side, the 92nd Street Y was founded as a Jewish cultural centre in 1874. The Q&A was held in the classically styled Kaufmann Concert Hall, built in 1930, which has entertained such people as Bill Clinton, Patti Smith, and Mikhail Gorbachev. Drinks and cocktails were served outside the hall an hour prior to the event.
Moderated by widely venerated and credited creator of NYC’s Fashion Week, Fern Mallis, the Fashion Icons Series has included such names as Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Michael Kors and Tom Ford. The re-scheduled Q&A – originally planned for November of last year, but cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy – is the first to kick off 2013.
After an introduction from Mallis, a short and substantial documentary about Jacobs and his brand was shown to the audience. As the lights went up, the suit-and-sneakers fashion designer found his spot in the chair on stage amongst a round of applause.
For over an hour and a half, the soon-to-be-50 fashion designer was on the whim of Mallis. Jacobs, who commented on his self-conscious persona, kept a calm and sophisticated demeanour throughout the evening. With topics ranging from career highs and lows, drug addiction, a rigorous diet plan, relationships, pets and his notoriously elaborate Halloween costumes, no question seemed too personal.
As the evening wrapped to a close, the audience had a chance to pose questions. Most asked for advice entering the fashion industry, though one represents an accurate allegory for Jacob’s character: “When did you realise you had made it?” “I’ve made it? Well, I don’t think that’s true.”
In 2010 Jacobs was placed on Time’s 100 Most Influential People and Out Magazine’s 2012 list of “50 Most Powerful Gay Men and Women in America”. Along with acting as head of his brand, Marc Jacobs, the designer has been the creative director for Louis Vuitton since 1997. He has been awarded numerous honours such as the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) and a Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award. Alongside creative collaborator Robert Duffy, the two have created one of the most popular fashion lines in the world.
Guests were invited to conclude the festivities with drinks and hors d’oeuvres at the Milton J Weill Art Gallery inside the Y. The Fashion Icons Series continues next week, with Betsey Johnson and Vera Wang in February.
Photos: Joyce Culver