The public fascination with the inner workings of the fashion world shows no signs of slowing down; witness the rash of street style blogs springing up all over the internet, the hordes of fashion bloggers attending the shows, not to mention the numerous books and movies providing the inside take on the fashion world. Who could forget the fabulosity (and sometime-ferociousness) of Valentino The Last Emperor, or the bitchy world of The Devil Wears Prada?
Which is why it’s refreshing to see a documentary celebrating the pure craft and the passion of an industry veteran. Ralph Rucci may not be a household name on this side of the pond but the couturier, who celebrates 30 years in the business this year, is the only American designer to have been invited to show at haute couture since Mainbocher in the 30s.
C. S. Leigh’s documentary follows the designer through four years in Paris in New York, as he negotiates the haute couture process from conception to catwalk, working with the world’s best artisans along the way. Featuring interviews with industry heavyweights Andre Leon Talley, Suzy Menkes and Cathy Horyn it seems this unsung great of the fashion world is finally taking his bow in the spotlight.
A Quiet American – Ralph Rucci & Paris is showing at Horse Hospital, Colonnade Bloomsbury, WC1N 1HX on September 17. For more info, visit www.thehorsehospital.com