January 24, 2021

Jean Paul Gaultier on Fragrance, Provocation and Chaos

PARIS — Jean Paul Gaultier is like a whirling dervish, in perpetual motion. In just a matter of days, the designer had been in Berlin, where costumes he created are being worn for a cabaret show at the Friedrichstadt-Palast, and also at the Cannes Film Festival. There he took in some movies — a favorite pastime — and posed for a photo with other former members of the event’s jury to mark its 70th anniversary.
By the time he sat down with WWD in his sprawling headquarters here, preparations for couture season were already well under way, as was the planning for the launch of his new women’s perfume, Scandal.
It is the first major fragrance introduction he will be making with Puig, which one-and-a-half years ago took in-house the Gaultier perfume business. That followed the Spanish company having acquired Gaultier’s fashion label in 2011.
Here, in a wide-ranging interview, the designer discusses topics including fashion, fragrance, social media, special projects and his love of TV.
WWD: Your fashion has long provoked. What do you find provocative today?
Jean Paul Gaultier: I think all the things that try to be provocative — more and more transparency, more and more extravagance — are provocative no longer, to

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