Women's Wear Daily published a report yesterday stating Balenciaga and parent company Kering have decided not to renew Alexander Wang's contract at the storied French house. It is reported that Wang's last fashion show for Balenciaga will be during the upcoming Paris Fashion Week and, according to sources, the search for Wang’s successor is underway. Alongside his role at Balenciaga, Wang also serves as creative director of his own label, which is set to launch its first European flagship in London this year.
While Wang's predecessor, Nicolas Ghesquière, was seen as an innovator during his tenure at the house - thanks to his progressive designs and use of new fabrications - Wang has taken a more minimalist approach to updating the house's codes, abandoning embellishments and sticking to a mostly-monochrome palette. In comparison to Ghesquière, Wang’s tenure at Balenciaga has been short. Ghesquière spent 15 years at the label before decamping to Louis Vuitton, where he is currently the creative director.
However, Wang's departure from the fashion house will not slow down Balenciaga. This year, they are opening a boutique in Florence, as well as having a series of store refurbishments and relocations in the pipeline. The label will also relocate its 250 employees to a new base within the parent company’s forthcoming headquarters, the Laennec complex in Paris.
The label is known for its recent hits in the leather goods category, such as the motorcycle bag, and will be celebrating its centenary in 2017.
Time Magazine's Person of the Year in 2006.