DUBAI: Moroccan-Egyptian-Dutch model Imaan Hammam took to social media this week to take her 1.1 million Instagram followers on a mini tour of the Azzedine Alaïa Foundation in Paris.
The model led fans through an exhibition at the foundation that celebrates the late Tunisian couturier’s work, as well as the work of renowned German fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh.
According to the foundation’s website, the pair managed to find “a common territory where each of their expressions seeks to reflect the other’s.
“Without saying a word, the photographer and the couturier were united by their love of black, a love that they would cultivate alike, be it in silver print or in solid color garments. Lindbergh ceaselessly turns to black and white to signify his search for authenticity in the faces he brings to light. Alaïa draws on the monochrome of timeless clothes, veritable sculptures for the body,” a press release for the exhibition stated.
The exhibition features a clutch of photographs by Lindbergh, alongside a showing of sculptural, monochromatic ensembled by Alaïa, who died in November 2017.
Before his passing in Paris, he was in the process of endowing the Azzedine Alaïa Association — a nonprofit administered by his closest accomplices Carla Sozzani, Olivier Saillard and Cristoph von Weyhe — in an effort to preserve his work and archives.
In 2020, the French government granted official foundation status to the Azzedine Alaïa Association, effectively making it a museum.
The couturier had been saving his own work since the 1980s, and he had been collecting the work of designers he admired for even longer, including pieces from Charles James, Paul Poiret, Vionnet, Chanel, Madame Grès and many others. Together, his private collection of clothing occupied five floors and approximately 14,760 square feet in Mr. Alaïa’s compound on rue de la Verrerie.
And it wasn’t just clothes. The late designer collected furniture from designers including Pierre Paulin, Jean Prouvé, Shiro Kuramata and Marc Newson, as well as books.
Hammam seemed taken in by the creativity on show, and captioned a series of images with black heart emojis, and even captioned one shot of a chainmail mini dress “dream look.”
In fact, the catwalk star was one of the first to pay tribute to the fashion legend after his death in 2017. Hammam was featured in a video uploaded to Instagram by French-Algerian model and filmmaker Farida Khelfa, saying: “I just want to say Azzedine Alaïa for me is a legend. Sadly, I haven’t had the chance to meet him, but he has a big place in my heart.”