Hedi Slimane releases tribute letter to David Bowie


Image: Harpers Bazaar

Published in the latest issue of the V&A's magazine, the man responsible for making Saint Laurent one of the most bought brands of the 21st century, Hedi Slimane has revealed a touching tribute to music's most iconic singer, David Bowie. Showcasing the impact that the British pop singer had on his life both professionally and personally, Slimane was asked to be guest contributor for the Victoria & Albert magazine, which apparently was conducted one night after fittings for his recent Palladium show in LA.


July 1975.

I open my birthday present and I meet David for the first time, at the age of seven.

David Live, recorded in Philadelphia one year before, is about to change my life.

My sister’s best friend, Veronique Jamin, puts the vinyl on my low-fi turntable.

Veronique is fifteen, the prettiest thing. She wears a black vinyl jumpsuit and puts blue glitter

on her eyes.


She plays and sings along: Aladdin Sane.

I am used to seeing her dancing, throwing back her beautiful hair, but this time it’s different.

This is about Bowie.

I lie down on the bed and observe the double album cover, the powder-blue suspended suit

of Freddie Burretti. The pale figure, the heroic posture, the slick electric hair.

I look at David. I am not quite sure if it is a boy or a girl.

I don’t care. I am the same anyway.

From this day, 5 July 1975, Bowie will protect me. 8 June 1983. Hippodrome d’Auteuil. My first concert.

There are about 100,000 people. I am excited and scared at the same time by the raw energy

of the crowd.

I will never forget how I felt that day.

I became a teenager when I walked into that venue.

David takes the stage: The Jean Genie.

100,000 girls and boys like an ocean under a storm.

Modern Love, and it’s over. I will never be the same.

My life was ahead of me.

David died and left us alone.

I lost my childhood, I lost my youth.

Nothing will ever be the same.

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