It’s officially official. Balenciaga has issued a press release stating that Alexander Wang will take on the role of creative director of the fashion house, succeeding Nicolas Ghesquière, making last week’s rumours a reality.
“I am deeply honored to embark on this new role for a brand and house that I have such great admiration and respect for,” said Alexander Wang in the press release. His new role at Balenciaga will include designing women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, accessories and maintaining the house’s image. His first collection for the almost 100-year-old house will be for Fall 2013—which is only a few months away. Wang’s role at his eponymous label will not change.
Although the time between today and the end of February seems a little short to pull together an entire collection, Isabelle Guichot, President & CEO of Balenciaga, told WWD, “I don’t want to put him under unnecessary pressure, so we will have to figure how we want to present. We will figure out together the pace of next year.” The format for his first collection at Balenciaga and whether it will show during Paris Fashion Week is undecided.
There has been some hesitation to accept Wang at the helm of Balenciaga and speculation about PPR’s—the company that owns Balenciaga—decision to tap into the young designer’s commercial appeal. But in the official release from PPR, François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO of PPR, said, “Alexander Wang will use his creativity and his own research to reinterpret and immortalize the distinctive, modern and extremely innovative style imposed by Cristóbal Balenciaga.”
Now that it’s official, we know we’re not alone in anxiously anticipating what Alexander Wang will bring to the Balenciaga brand in the wake of Ghesquière. It’s a do or die moment for the young designer.