Madonna in Jean Paul Gaultier’s nude cone bra is one of the most enduring images in fashion history. The conical shaped bra, with its superfluous shape and sculptural points, came to define the French couture designer, along with Breton stripes and bustiers. Even Barbie wore one.
Now, after 50 years in fashion – the venerable couturier is hanging up the cone bras and couture, announcing he will take his final bow at his Spring/Summer 2020 couture show this week.
But, it’s not the end for Gaultier. The cheeky designer informed fans via a theatrical video on Twitter that couture will continue – albeit in a new format. “But, but, but I assure you: Gaultier Paris will continue, haute couture will continue. I have a new concept; I’ll tell you about it later, I’ll tell you all the little secrets. But it is going to continue,” he said talking into a telephone, as if a journalist was on the other end.
The ready-to-wear and perfume arms of the business will also continue, but Jean Paul Gaultier will take a step back from designing garments. “I’m going to give you a scoop. This will be my last haute couture show. My last Gaultier Paris show. You have to come, you can’t miss that.” Indeed. If it’s anything like the last 50 years – subversive, disruptive, theatrical and camp – we certainly can’t miss it.