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August 21 2014

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2 posts tagged "Alex de Betak"

Felipe Oliviera Baptista Reflects on a Decade of Design

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Felipe Oliviera Baptista exhibition

This year marks the tenth anniversary of Portuguese-born, Paris-based designer Felipe Oliveira Baptista’s eponymous line. And to celebrate, Lisbon’s Design and Fashion Museum (MuDe) has asked him to put on a retrospective, which opens tonight and runs through February 16. Together with famed set designer Alex de Betak, Baptista—who created quite a buzz three years ago when he replaced Christophe Lemaire as the creative director of Lacoste—has put together a high-concept show that he hopes will tell the story behind his clothes. In addition to a comprehensive selection of the designer’s clean, sometimes severe, sometimes light-as-air looks from the past decade, Baptista and Betak have built an electronic brain of sorts that showcases his inspiration images, photographs, and sketches on a cluster of screens. “I think it’s really interesting to show people what they never see,” offered Baptista, who did stints at Max Mara and Cerruti before launching his own line in 2003. “I thought it was interesting to show them where it comes from, and how it gets there.” Here, Baptista talks to Style.com about the exhibition, his anniversary, and how he’s watched fashion change—for better and for worse.

Ten years is quite a milestone. When you first launched your line, is this where you thought you’d be a decade down the road?
I think when you start, you have to be aware that the chances of surviving the first five years are slim. It’s quite reassuring to arrive here, and it’s been exciting to experience this progression. And when Lacoste arrived three years ago, it was a big revolution in my life. It’s more than anything I expected.

How do you feel that the role of the fashion designer has changed over the past ten years?
It’s changed a lot. The rhythm has changed. When I first started working fifteen years ago, in all the houses I worked in we had two collections, and then three arrived, and then more and more and more collections, more fashion weeks, more of everything. Sometimes, you need some time to get a little perspective. On the other hand, it’s very exciting and fast-paced. But I always manage to escape into museums and see things. Trying to find some moments to breath is quite important.

Do you prefer the fast pace, or do you miss the old days?
Sometimes I wish that we could have more time to go in depth and try to do the best as we can. It’s funny, because when you talk to people from the industry, almost everyone complains a little bit about these things. [The fashion cycle] is a machine that I think no one can fight.

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Alex De Betak, After Hours

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In our latest “After Hours” video, filmmaker Alexis Dahan hits the party circuit with the near-legendary show producer and scenographer Alex de Betak. You may be less than familiar with his name—you’ll definitely be familiar with his work.

De Betak is the go-to for the biggest labels, designers, and companies, and has been responsible for some of the biggest productions in recent fashion show history. His client list not only reads like a who’s-who, it’s also a how-long: De Betak has logged over a decade with Christian Dior (whose former designer, John Galliano, had an incurable taste for operatic productions) and Hussein Chalayan, and years with Victoria’s Secret and Rodarte (whose recent MOCA retrospective show he also designed). He’s also got the rare distinction of being the only man to create a larger-than-life crystal chandelier of Gisele.

Music for “After Hours” provided by Io Echo and The Drums.

Photo: Billy Farrell / BFAnyc.com