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History

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01/1971 Forties Collection

Forties Collection: square shoulders, bouffant sleeves and platform shoes, as well as the famous green fox fur jacket that created a scandal... 

There's a love affair between me and the street. 1971 is a great year because fashion is finally hitting the streets. 
- Yves Saint Laurent

1972 Ownership, Finally!

 Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé acquire the fashion house, while Squibb Pharmaceuticals keeps the perfume business.

1972 Loulou de la Falaise joins the studio

Yves Saint Laurent's muse joined the studio's team this year. She would go on to play a central role in Yves Saint Laurent's creative process.

 

Pierre Bergé, 1973 / Pierre Bergé, 1973

1973 Mode et Création' at the 'Chambre Syndicale de la Mode'

Pierre Bergé creates the Mode et Création (Fashion and Creation) group to represent ready-to-wear creators within the Chambre Syndicale de la Mode. The organization includes Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior, Emanuel Ungaro, Chloé, Dorothée Bis, Sonia Rykiel, Kenzo et Emmanuelle Khanh.

 

5 avenue Marceau / 5 Avenue Marceau

07/14/1974 5 avenue Marceau

The fashion house moves to number 5 Avenue Marceau, a townhouse of the Second Empire period. The building today houses the Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent Foundation. 

Couture is a mistress which costs a great deal of money. It has another seven years to live. 
- Yves Saint Laurent 

We have but one goal: to maintain quality and prestige.  
- Pierre Bergé

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07/1976 The Russian Ballet and Opera Collection

For the first time in the history of fashion shows, the Russian Ballet and Opera Collection was presented as a staged performance in the gilded salons of the InterContinental Hotel. 

It may not be the best, but it's certainly the most beautiful.
- Yves Saint Laurent 

A revolutionary collection which will change the course of fashion in the world. 
- New York Times

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1977 Acquisition of the Athénée Theater

Pierre Bergé purchases and renovates the Athénée Theater, adding a new auditorium designed by Jacques Grange. His ecclectic directorship melds classics with the works of playwrights who are relatively unknown in France. He produces Peter Shaffer's Equus for the first time in French. He introduced Les Lundis Musicaux - Musical Mondays - into the theater's regular programs, bringing some of the greatest voices in the world to the Athénée's stage. 
In 1985, Pierre Bergé sells the entirely renovated Athénée Theater to the french Ministry of Culture for a token franc.

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07/1977 Opium Perfume

Following the Chinese Collection, Yves Saint Laurent announces the launch of Opium perfume. Less than a year after Mao's death, Imperial China is back in fashion. The Mafia advertising agency, run by Maïmé Arnodin and Denise Fayolle, handles the launch. Jerry Hall is photographed by Helmut Newton for the campaign. A lawsuit is filed in the US, contending false advertising because the perfume does not contain opium.

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07/1979 Homage to Picasso and Diaghilev Collection

An exhibit devoted to Russian ballet at the Bibliothèque Nationale (National Library) inspires Yves Saint Laurent who designs his collection “like a ballet.” 
He tells Vogue: “Some collections, like this one, appear special to me. I fell an artistic joy.The extraordinary thing is to transpose this inspiration to the female body and not be closed in by selfishness. [...] 
Picasso represents quintessential genius. His work explodes with life and honesty. Picasso is not purity. He's Baroque.” 

The embroidery, the harlequins, the pink and blue of the collection are hailed by Vogue as “the Greatest evening” and by the New York Times as “the Cordobes of the catwalks.”

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1980 Shakespeare and the Poets Collection

Inspired by the model Violetta Sanchez, the collection underscores once again Yves Saint Laurent's profound link to theater.
It is a homage to Shakespear, in red and black, with strong contrasts and a dramatic subtext. It will be a goodbye to costume design for Saint Laurent, who wishes to devote himself solely to fashion.

The collection is also a homage to poets and writers: Apollinaire's Tout terriblement, Aragon's Les yeux d'Elsa, Cocteau.



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