I didn't believe my ears when I first heard the news. John Galliano…arrested?? For anti-Semitic comments and assault??! How could the same mind that created sublime beauty also be capable of something so hideous?!
I have forever dreamt of going for a Galliano show. A Galliano show is no ordinary show. It is a grand spectacle...a celebration of magnificence, fantasy and beauty. But after what I heard two nights ago, it is as if a magic spell has been broken. Galliano was the magician who created fantastical concoctions of tulle and lace and chiffon and satin…these concoctions that transported me instantly to his parallel universe of fantastical beauty. And then all of a sudden, BBC was telling me that this creator of dreams was really a foul-mouthed, racist drunk. The spell was broken.
I still cannot get my head around how someone capable of creating such beauty could also do something so grotesque. I guess all of us have had a drunken brawl at some point in our lives (definitely said and done some regrettable things) and John Galliano, the great artist that he is, is human at the end of the day. Cut him some slack? The razzle-dazzle of ‘celebrity’, attention, glamour-it is a heady mix and perhaps John the Magnificent had had a little too much of it that night.
But ah! That’s the not so shiny side of fame. With every move scrutinized, a racist slur (even if it was in an inebriated state) was a tough one to get out of. A slap on the wrist has been meted out. Dior has a ‘zero tolerance policy’ regarding racism and Galliano has been suspended from his position at the fashion house (on the eve of Paris fashion week! Wonder how Dior is holding up without their star creative head?).
Here is the interesting part though, and I’m sure fashion-conspiracy theorists are having a field day with it- there is apparently no third party witness to the allegations. Basically, all the drama has been created based on the word of the ‘victims’ (a couple who Galliano allegedly assaulted and verbally abused). Without other witnesses, can we know what really happened? The politically correct side of me says that Galliano got what he deserved and when it comes to things like racist attacks, no one should be let off the hook. There is simply no space for these kind of ridiculous, gross, backward ideas in this day and age. But the fashion- loving, Galliano –loving side of me feels otherwise. One look at his creations and anyone can tell that they come from a brilliant, most certainly well-read, mind. And he just doesn’t seem like the type to say nasty things to people and get involved in drunken brawls! He belongs to a world of fantasy and beauty where ugly racist slurs have no place!
What really happened, we’ll only know after the investigations are over. I’m just hoping that the end is in favour of John the Magnificent. We love his clothes, the stage of make-believe he creates and his signature, dramatic bow at the end of every show. I just hope the curtain does not close on him forever for him because of this of this episode! Please, please, please! Let the allegations made turn out to be empty and then the magic spell can be restored. I can then go back to drooling over his dreamy concoctions, often inspired by another era, without getting repulsed by the idea that these very same clothes were created by a drunk , neo-nazi type.