Hedi Slimane Has Gone to Temples to Find His New Muse

Few designers are as acoustically inclined as Hedi Slimane. Since taking over chez Saint Laurent, the designer has firmly focused on elevating elements rock and punk, turning out collections full of combat boots, studs, motorcycle jackets, and other rockstar staples. 

In keeping with the aesthetic, Slimane has turned to musicians as his muses, in part through the Saint Laurent Music Project, which has brought legends like Marianne Faithfull, Chuck Berry, BB King, Courtney Love, and Marilyn Manson into the label’s clothing and campaigns. Now the designer is training his lens on a future icon: the lion-maned rocker James Edward Bagshaw of the British band Temples. Shot by Slimane on location in music capital of Austin, Texas, the images will be featured prominently in the artist’s upcoming photo book, Sonic (Xavier Barral, September 2014).

The Music Project, in which musicians are free to style themselves from current and permanent pieces from the collection, extends beyond fashion photography; musicians have also been invited to create signature soundtracks for the label’s runway presentations. And while the designer has ruffled feathers for straying from brand DNA before, the move is rather in keeping with YSL history. Saint Laurent himself, after all, was the designer who dressed Mick and Bianca Jagger for one of the most iconic intersections of rock and fashion in history: the couple’s 1971 wedding. 

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