Dior replaces John Galliano with Raf Simons
More than a year after it fired John Galliano as creative director, Dior has reportedly selected Raf Simons to replace him, the New York Times reports.
Simons, 44, previously led Jil Sander for six years, leaving in February when Sander returned to the brand. Unlike the flamboyant Galliano, who ended each runway show with a flourish of theatricality, Simons is temperamentally more restrained -- although he did have tears in his eyes when he presented his last show for Sander in Milan in February.
During its year-plus of searching for a replacement, Dior had considered a galaxy of star designers, including Marc Jacobs of Louis Vuitton and Alber Elbaz of Lanvin. Meanwhile, the label's studio chief Bill Gaytten kept things humming along at Dior.
Galliano was fired after evidence that he erupted in anti-Semitic rants on a couple of occasions in a bar in Paris. He later was convicted and fined by a court -- anti-Semitic comments are a crime in France. He also reportedly sought treatment for substance abuse, but the episode also shone a light on the stress designers are under to stay creative in the almost nonstop cycle of fashion seasons.
-- Susan Denley
Photo: Designer Raf Simons, formerly of Jil Sander, has been selected to replace John Galliano as creative director at Dior. Credit: Giuseppe Aresul / Associated Press