Saint Laurent’s homage to Van Gogh

Around one hundred iconic pieces by Yves Saint Laurent will be sold at auction on 23 January at Cornette de Saint Cyr in Paris. Successful entrepreneur and haute-couture fan Mouna Ayoub will sell her somptuous “Iris” jacket”, designed in 1988 as a tribute to Dutch painter Vincent Van Gogh and embroidered by famous Maison Lesage. The sale of Ayoub’s wardrobe will include garments from the French couturier ranging from 1988 to 2001.

The jacket was made of organza, completely embroidered with sequins, some enhanced with paint, pearls and painted ribbons. “It’s among the most beautiful pieces I’ve made” said Yves Saint Laurent in a letter to Mouna Ayoub in 1999. A copy is currently featured in the exhibition “The Asian dream of Yves Saint Laurent” at the Yves Saint Laurent museum in Paris.

The beauty of this jacket may lie in the story that inspired it. Kenzo Takada, Japanese designer and founder of the brand Kenzo, emphasizes the importance of the iris. He said: “this is the symbol of the boys’ festival in Japan, which takes place every year in early May. This mythical flower is also present in many parks, gardens and temple across the country”. He adds that “Yves Saint Laurent has brilliantly and virtuously reinterpreted this theme by exploring different forms of irises, to make this piece one of the most impressive of its collections”.

Image: Yves Saint Laurent, Veste Iris Hommage à Vincent Van Gogh (détail) – Modèle n°93, Haute Couture, Printemps – Été 1988, Veste d’organza de soie brodée, broderies François Lesage, boutons Maison Desrues.