LONDON, United Kingdom — Riccardo Tisci is exiting Givenchy after 12 years in the role of creative director, as rumours intensify that the designer will join Versace.
Tisci, who is credited with resurrecting Givenchy with his dark, sensual and subversive collections, is reported to have left the LVMH-owned couture house on January 31 when his contract ended. His last collection for Givenchy was shown in January at Couture Week in Paris. As a result of his departure, the brand will not hold a runway show during Paris Fashion Week.
"The chapter Riccardo Tisci has written with the house of Givenchy over the last 12 years represents an incredible vision to sustain its continuous success, and I would like to warmly thank him for his core contribution to the house’s development," said Bernard Arnault, chairman and chief executive officer of LVMH in a statement.
“I have very special affection for the House of Givenchy and its beautiful teams," Tisci added. "I want to thank the LVMH group and Monsieur Bernard Arnault for giving me the platform to express my creativity over the years. I now wish to focus on my personal interests and passions.”
LVMH said in a statement that the new creative organisation of Givenchy will be communicated at a later date.
During his time at Givenchy, Tisci breathed much-needed life into the brand's womenswear, menswear and accessories.
Tisci left his hometown of Taranto, southern Italy to study at Central Saint Martins in London, graduating in 1999. He returned to Italy to work for a number of brands including Antonio Berardi, Coccapani, Puma and Ruffo Research. In September 2004 he set up an eponymous ready-to-wear label, showing his first collection in Milan for the Autumn/Winter 2005 season, which caught the attention of press and LVMH executives, who hired Tisci to replace Julien Macdonald as creative director of Givenchy in February 2005.
Throughout his tenure, Tisci has pushed the boundaries of one of France’s most storied couture houses, which was largely associated with its founder’s close relationship with actress Audrey Hepburn, who was a lifelong client and enlisted Hubert de Givenchy to design many of her iconic Hollywood costumes.
As well as designing highly embellished collections of haute couture, the Italian designer achieved notoriety for distinctive graphic sweatshirts, sneakers and sportswear-inspired garments. In 2010, he cast the Brazilian transgender model Lea T to walk in his ready-to-wear show — as well as booking her for the advertising campaign.
Other notable highlights have included his enduring relationships with artists Marina Abramović, Madonna and Beyoncé, as well as the album artwork he designed for "Watch The Throne", Kanye West and Jay Z’s Grammy-winning 2011 collaboration. Tisci was one of the first Paris-based fashion designers to embrace Kim Kardashian West and her extended family, eventually designing her wedding dress in 2014.
Givenchy is credited with being one of LVMH's most successful luxury brands though the company does not disclose separate figures for each house. However, in its annual results last week, LVMH reported that its fashion and leather division grew by 8 percent in the fourth quarter, beating analyst estimates.