Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Shamed 50-year-old designer John Galliano, who served as creative executive for the Christian Dior line, arrived at a Paris courthouse today, clad in garments only a fancy designer could pull off. Dressed in black jacket and vest, sans shirt, with a polka dot scarf around his neck, Galliano looked glum. And weird.
If you haven’t heard, the famous designer was fired from his position after he went on an anti-Semetic tirade at a Parisian café. Galliano’s Hitler-loving tirade, which was directed at a couple seated near him, hit the Internet via a cell phone recording and after 15 years of service with Dior, he was promptly fired due to the fashion house’s zero-tolerance policy against any anti-Semitic behavior.
Galliano issued a statement after the video surfaced, saying that “anti-Semitism and racism have no part in our society. I unreservedly apologize for my behavior in causing any offence.”
Now the man who dressed such figures as Princess Diana, Madonna and recent Academy Award winner Natalie Portman, faces criminal charges for his actions and is charged with making “public insults based on origin, religious affiliation, race or ethnicity” a crime that could see him up to six months in prison and €22,500 ($32,500) in fines.
In court today, the British designer pleaded that he doesn’t remember the rant. He argued that after his workload increased tremendously, he spiralled into a “triple addiction” of Valium, Ambien and alcohol abuse and that he continually popped antidepressants.
One of the targets of Galliano’s insults, Geraldine Bloch, a 35-year-old art curator at the Arab World Institute in Paris, is suing the designer for one Euro. Although Bloch claimed she didn’t want to draw media attention to the incident, she felt that the suit was necessary.
The British designer’s firing from Dior occurred just three days before he was to present the company’s fall-winter womenswear collection. His firing marked the end of one of the most successful collaborations in the world of high fashion. Galliano’s fate will be determined at a later date.
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