In today’s edition of “who went where,” WWD has revealed that Alexander Wang is exiting Balenciaga. Since taking helm as creative director in 2013, the New York-based designer has blended his street-inspired aesthetic and founder Cristóbal Balenciaga‘s signatures (structured volume and striking sillhouettes are a few examples) with sometimes-mixed results.
Compared to his predecessor, Nicolas Ghesquière, Wang’s six-season tenure at the label (he’ll show his Spring 2016 collection during Paris Fashion Week) has been relatively short. Ghesquière, who helmed the label for 15 years, was incredibly experimental, resurrecting the sleeping house and transforming it into one of the most avant garde, yet commercially successful in the biz (throwback to the hugely popular City Bag). At the time, there were reports that Ghesquière wasn’t commercial enough, hence the swap.
During Wang’s years, Kering, Balenciaga’s parent company reported “double digit growth,” but six seasons is scarcely enough time to really grow into the role (kind of like how 200 words is never enough to count the ways). Often, Wang’s collections felt flat, with his respect for the label’s “house codes” getting in the way of true innovation or playfulness. That being said, there were great moments—laminated latex parkas and ear-climbing pearls among them. Which were your favourites?