On Making A Galliano Documentary

Josh Slater-Williams has an interview for Mubi with a very thoughtful Kevin Macdonald about the implications of making High & Low — John Galliano, a documentary that about the designer’s career, his conviction for his vile anti-semitic outburst in Paris, and his not-uncontroversial return to fashion afterward.

Coming from outside of the fashion industry and its norms is probably Macdonald’s greatest superpower here; he’s able to recognize the self-delusions that haunt the field and its most intense and talented figures, and to put them on view. What I didn’t expect was to hear how Galliano handled his own role in a situation where he ceded all editorial and creative control:

He wanted to achieve various conscious things, but I think also this is part of his therapy, I suppose. It’s part of his trying to figure things out for himself. That was really apparent to me when I went to the Margiela show that we filmed, that begins and ends the film. I realized as we were watching it: my God, this show is about having a documentary made about your life. It’s about his life filtered through film, because he made a fashion show that is a film at the same time.

A Psychological Detective Story: Kevin Macdonald on “High & Low – John Galliano” [mubi]
Previously, related: Margiela Artisanal Cardboard, Rover, Bunny, Beanie