Claude Martinez, president and chief executive officer of Parfums Christian Dior said in a statement, “His talent and his unique and modern vision of beauty are recognised around the world.”
In 2013, Philips stepped down from his role as creative director of Chanel’s makeup and beauty lines, where he was responsible for both product development and the makeup looks for Chanel’s numerous campaigns and runway shows.
Phillips graduated from the Royal Academy Antwerp, where he matriculated with long-term collaborators Raf Simons and Willy Vanderperre. Phillips initially studied fashion design, however, whilst working as a dresser, backstage at a show he told The Independent that he “saw the make-up teams and realised you could make a living out of doing that. So when I realised that in fashion you could also do make-up, I was intrigued.”
Phillips quickly began to work as a makeup artist, although by his own admission he was “very selective” with who he chose to do so with. Whilst working on a shoot with Vanderperre, Phillips chose to sketch Mickey Mouse on to a model’s face, and in the process created one of his most iconic images.