elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Ossie Clark, Celia Birtwell, Nicholas Balaban & Diego Cogolato

Raymond "Ossie" Clark (9 June 1942 – 6 August 1996) was an English fashion designer who was a major figure in the Swinging Sixties scene in London and the fashion industry in that era. Clark is now renowned for his vintage designs by present-day designers. In 1996, 54 year old Ossie was stabbed to death in his council flat in Kensington and Chelsea, London, by his then 28 year old Italian former lover, Diego Cogolato. Cogolato was convicted of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility and jailed for six years.

Clark is compared to the 1960s fashion great Biba and influenced many other designers, including Yves Saint Laurent, Anna Sui and Tom Ford. Manolo Blahnik has said of Ossie Clark's work: "He created an incredible magic with the body and achieved what fashion should do — produce desire." Ossie Clark and Ossie Clark for Radley clothes are highly sought after, and are worn by well known models like Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell.

Born in Warrington, Cheshire, England in 1942, Raymond Clark's parents, Anne and Samuel Clark, moved to Oswaldtwistle during the war, hence his nickname, "Ossie". Ossie's mother, Anne Grace Clark, was in labour with Ossie for seven days during an air raid in World War II. Anne had been expecting a girl and so had no name picked out for her new baby. She let the midwife name him Raymond. Ossie was the youngest of six children ( Gladys, Kay, Beryl, Sammy and John ). Ossie and his brother John sang in the church choir at St Oswald's church in Winwick where Ossie won awards for his vocal talents.

Family and friends noted that from a very early age he was "brilliant at doing anything". Young Ossie would make clothes for his nieces and nephews. He practised tailoring clothing on his dolls and designed swimsuits for the neighborhood girls when not yet ten years old. The Art teacher at Ossie's Secondary School recognised Ossie's creative flair and gave him a large collection of Vogue and Harper's Bazaar magazines. Clark pored over these magazines and absorbed the glamour and cutting edge fashion.

David Hockney's Mr. and Mrs. Clark and Percy
Ossie Clark met Celia Birtwell in 1961 when they were at art school in Lancashire. They married in 1969 when she was pregnant with their first son, Albert. They had another son, George, 3 years later. David Hockney painted' Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy', as a wedding present. He was taking drugs and began to go downhill. She was tired of his other affairs and started to have an affair with artist Adrian George. When Clark found out he began violent episodes towards her. She divorced him in 1974.

The pictures behind Kim Waiyaki and Nick Balaban are Kim's homoerotic African influenced lithographs and silkscreen prints which he showed in the "No Comment" exhibition.
In January 1978 Ossie Clark met his second long term partner Nicholas Balaban who was working as a barman at the Sombrero Club in Kensington. With Ossie's encouragement Balaban applied to the Byam Shaw School of Art and went on to start his own highly successful fashion business producing printed T-shirts for high street boutiques and multiples. Unfortunately Clarke's continued erratic behaviour eventually led to the relationship's collapse in 1983/84. Nick died of AIDS in 1994.

The 'Village People' are Nick Balaban, Guy Burch and Geraldine Walsh taken in 1984 at Byam Shaw where they studied at the time of "No Comment"
In 1995 Ossie Clark invited the 27-year-old Italian Diego Cogolato to move in with him as his lover. Although split up they continued to see each other. At 6 am on 7th August 1996 Diego Cogolato went in a dazed state to a police station and said that he thought that he had killed someone. In fact he had stabbed Clark in his flat 37 times and then bashed his head in. Cogolato was convicted of the murder but on the grounds of diminished responsibility he was given just a six-year sentence.

Amanda Lear, 1968, Satin three-piece party trouser-suit by Ossie Clark and Amanda Pollock, London ©Getty Images

Ossie Clark and Peter Morgan, 1965, ©Getty Images

Ossie Clark and models, 1966, Ossie Clark, Judy Guy Johnson and Patti Boyd ©Getty Images

Ossie Clark, 1970 ©Getty Images

Ossie Clark and Celia Birtwell, 1971 ©Getty Images

Ossie Clark, 1972 ©Getty Images

1967, Linda Keith wears 'Oz', a snakeskin suit with short jacket and flared skirt; Chrissie Shrimpton wears 'Little Louis Angel', a cream silk party dress; Suki Poitier wears 'Boogie-Woogie', a silk Levy suit; and Annie Sabroux wears 'Hipster', a studded leather jacket with a zip-up front and cuffs ©Getty Images

Amanda Lear, 1968, Ossie Clark for Alice Pollock suit ©Getty Images

Amanda Lear, 1968, Ossie Clark for Alice Pollock suit ©Getty Images

Bill Chenail, 1968, Ossie Clark e Alice Pollock jacket and pants ©AP Images

Ali MacGraw, 1969, Ossie Clark dress ©Getty Images

Vicki Hodge, 1969, Rough suede trouser suit with long fringe, part of the Ossie Clark and Alice Pollock collection ©Getty Images

Ali MacGraw, 1969, Ossie Clark dress ©Getty Images

Vogue Italia, October 1969, Ossie Clark coat, Photo by David Bailey

Vogue Italia, December 1969, Ossie Clark dress and coat, Photo by Barry Lategan

1970, Ossie Clark dress ©Getty Images

Vogue Italia, February 1970, Ossie Clark shirt and pants, Photo by Elisabetta Catalano, Patrick Lichfield

Vogue Italia, June 1972, Ossie Clark pants and shirt, Photo by Sarah Moon

Twiggy, 1972, Fur coat by Ossie Clark ©Getty Images

Hazel, 1973, Ossie Clark's Mini Dress, London, ©Getty Images

Lamborghini, Chinoisery, early 1969
A fashionable young woman wore this suit as a wedding outfit in the spring of 1969. The designer Ossie Clark used shiny satinised cotton for the sharply tailored ensemble. Its form-fitting silhouette and diagonally placed pockets accent the waist and hips. Ossie Clark was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s. He was among the first to produce trouser suits for women. This particular suit was called 'Lamborghini' after the luxury car. The trousers are made from a Celia Birtwell print called 'Chinoisery'.
This streamlined, iconic trouser suit is a key Ossie Clark design. While he was best known for his flowing chiffon and crepe gowns, Ossie Clark was also a skilled tailor. This suit, christened 'Lamborghini', was one of his most successful designs, being worn by a number of models, It Girls, and faithful clients. Twiggy was photographed wearing hers. It was also modified for ready-to-wear as part of the first "Ossie Clark For Radley" collection the following year.
While the cream satin jacket and black-ground "Chinoisery" print trousers (designed by Celia Birtwell) are the most famous incarnation of the Lamborghini, other, rarer variations appear with printed satin jackets and plain trousers, or both pieces being printed satin.
Historical significance: The 'Lamborghini' is the best-known example of Ossie Clark's tailoring. This cream satin jacket and chinoiserie style printed trousers, created in 1968, were worn by a number of Ossie's fans and loyal clients. Twiggy was photographed wearing hers.

Floating Daisy; Poppy, 1969
Ossie Clark used the 'Floating Daisy' print along with a larger floral for this ensemble. The 'Floating Daisy' design had a bold graphic quality. This made it easy for Clark to adapt it for his lower-priced 'Ossie Clark for Radley' range. In 1970 you could have bought this ensemble for around £140. The Radley version would have cost you £30.

Tunic, 1968
This tunic was part of Ossie Clark's first collection for his lower-priced Radley label. The print is by Celia Birtwell. The simple silhouette meant that it could be worn either as a dress or with trousers. Kay, Ossie Clark's sister, wore it as a mini-dress when Clark married Celia Birtwell in 1968. Ossie Clark was one of Britian's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s.

Tunic top & Skirt, 1973
Vogue magazine featured this quintessential Ossie Clark ensemble in the issue of April 1972. Ossie Clark was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers in the 1960s and 1970s. Mrs John Ritblat has been purchasing selected highlights from couture and ready-to-wear collections since the 1960s. In 1997 she donated much of this wardrobe to the V&A. Her gift included this Clark ensemble. Its exuberant Celia Birtwell print and flowing silhouette are typical of Clark's designs in the early 1970s.
Illustrated in the Daily Telegraph Magazine, May 5th 1972. The accompanying copy read:
"You no longer need time on your hands and London on your doorstep to keep slightly ahead of fashion. Now many of the brighter boutiques sell their clothes by post, and it is as easy to dress well in the Hebrides as in Kensington. For example, Ossie Clark's screen-printed silk skirt and flowing smock (above) can be ordered separately from Just Looking, 88 King's Road, London SW3 and 5-7 Brompton Road, SW3. The smock costs £34.10, the skirt £56.65 (plus 25p post and packing)."

Elvis Presley Check, 1969
Ossie Clark was one Britain's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 70s. This was one of the first Ossie Clark designs for his less-expensive Radley label, and was designed to be worn as a mini-dress, with bare legs. Although the printed crepe is quite transparent, fashionable young women would have tended not to wear underwear underneath.

Evening dress, 1969
Ossie Clark designed this evening dress. He was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s. Talitha Getty, who wore this dress, was one of Clark's best clients. Born Talitha Pol in Bali in 1966, she married Sir Paul Getty, the wealthy American-born businessman. Talitha was an actress and model. She was known for her fashionable wardrobe. This form-fitting dress features a distinctive Celia Birtwell print. It exemplifies Talitha's individual sense of style.
This dress was worn by Talitha Getty and donated by Paul Getty via Cecil Beaton. An identical Ossie Clark dress is featured on film in a German-made fashion report made by London Akutell in 1969.

Evening dress, 1970-1971
Ossie Clark designed this dress. He was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s. Throughout his career he used the textiles designed by his wife Celia Birtwell. This dress features one of her most popular patterns, which mingles hearts with feathers and poppies. Ossie Clark used it for a variety of garments. Here the motifs appear in vibrant red and green on a cream ground. A fanciful yoke of appliquéd feathers accents the collar.

Evening dress, 1974-1976
This dress has the simple, flattering lines of a classic Ossie Clark design. Its flowing silhouette, waist-tie and deep décolletage suited women of most shapes and sizes. This style was very successful when the Radley label produced it. Radley made it in printed fabrics as well as a range of coloured crêpes.
A very popular design from Al Radley's wholesale/ready to wear range of Ossie Clark designs. This particular design was manufactured in various colours and fabrics (including chiffon, muslin, and cheesecloth) and sometimes even featured machine embroidery. It was produced from 1969 through to the mid 1970s, and was one of the staples of the line. The moss crepe fabric in this example is not quite as nice quality as earlier examples, the Deco style label also indicates a later date. (Daniel Milford-Cottam, 2009)

Trouser suit, 1970
This 'Ossie Clark for Radley' design became a top seller in the early 1970s. At this time women increasingly adopted trousers both for work and leisure. Clark accents its classic cut with scalloped satin piping along the jacket front. Satin trim also embellishes the cuffs and pockets.

Floating Daisy, Coat, 1970
Ossie Clark designed this coat. He was one of Britain's most influential fashion designers in the 1960s and 1970s. Clark used fabrics designed by his wife, the textile designer Celia Birtwell. For this coat Clark chose 'Floating Daisy', one of Birtwell's best-known textiles. A complementary grid pattern flatters the collar, cuffs and bodice. The coat's trim shape demonstrates Clark's skill at accentuating the female form.
Typical early 1970s design showing a joyful ecclectism : a powerful design by Celia Birtwell where flowers clash with geometrical lines and mystic rainbows transformed into a shift dress reminiscent of the flaring shapes of the 1930s.

Trouser suit, 1971
This trouser and top ensemble epitomises the work of Ossie Clark. He was one Britain's most influential fashion designers of the 1960s and 1970s. Trousers were an Ossie Clark hallmark, and he designed many variations throughout his career. He used fabrics designed by his wife Celia Birtwell for almost all his clothes. The pattern you can see here is a stripe and leaf design. Clark chose delicate chiffon for the top, which has an exaggerated bow at the neck. The chiffon is provocatively sheer. The top is also open down the midriff, offering an alluring glimpse of the wearer's skin.

Rock and pop costume, 1972
By their 1972 American and European tour, The Rolling Stones had been together for over ten years, and had garnered a reputation as the “The Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Band in the World”. The title had been conferred on them by their tour manager on their 1969 US tour, and it stuck with them ever since. The 1972 tour, labelled “one of the benchmarks of an era” by Dave Marsh (an American music journalist), was covered by well-established writers such as Terry Southern (screenwriter of Easy Rider) and Truman Capote. This was a first for a rock tour, and indicative of how the tour was perceived culturally.
The Stones tour coincided with the explosion of the glam rock movement in British pop. David Bowie’s androgynous alien and Marc Bolan’s glitter pixie were dominating Top of the Pops and Melody Maker and their stylistic influence on the British music scene was palpable in nearly every band of the time. Mick Jagger, as a performer, had an element of adrodgyny about him and the glam style fitted perfectly with his stage personality.
The costume for this tour was specially designed for him by Ossie Clark, famed for his romantic flowing gowns and unabashed show-stopping garments. Jagger had become a client of his in the late 1960s, and Clark had created this voluptuous outfit for this tour in the glam style, reminiscent of costumes Bowie had been pictured in; an all-in-one velvet jump suit, with large areas uncovered to show off Jagger’s lithe body.

Paper dress, 1966
Paper dresses were a brief but spectacular 1960s sensation. They were cheap and disposable, and the simple 2-D shape was ideal for the bold graphic prints that were so fashionable.
In 1966 the Draper's Record announced that Ossie Clark had launched Britain's first range of throwaway dresses. The floral design, by Celia Birtwell, was printed onto imitation paper made by Johnson and Johnson, formed from bonded textile fibres. The wholesale price was 15 shillings.

Blouse & Trousers, 1967-69
Part of an outfit worn by Shirley Abicair and donated by her to represent the 1969 Hippy in the Street Style exhibition. In the late 60s Shirley Abicair was a musician and television presenter. She loved wearing Ossie Clark's clothes and combined them with special garments made by her creative friends, such as the hat and waistcoat here. The mud stains on the trousers are from Stonehenge. Shirley Abicair sometimes painted her face with fluorescent coloured lacy designs while wearing this outfit.
"Shirley Abicair arrived in England from Australia via Singapore and Karachi in the Fifties. 'I was a music student. It seemed the most natural thing in the world for me to arrive at the airport wearing a Punjabi dress, silk baggy trousers, tunic and embroidered slippers, with dead jasmine in my hair and around my wrist - it had been a long flight. I was singing folk songs and was interested in different cultures. It just seemed a natural thing for me to do.'
In the Sixties Abacair spent her time between America and England. 'I was in New York because I was writing an album there, and then I spent some time in Oregon which I loved because of the space and air. When the Sixties arrived I was in my element. I bought beautiful Twenties and Thirties clothes from the Chelsea Antique Market, and tie-dyed T-shirts and jeans from stalls in the King's Road or Carnaby Street. I had a beautiful burgundy Borsalino hat that I bought in Greenwich Village and wore everywhere and with everything. It was, in fact, my second Borsalino - I lost the first one at a Grateful Dead concert at the Phillmore West in San Francisco.'"
(Shirley Abicair, interviewed by Sarah Callard for "The British supermarket of style", published in The Independent, Saturday 25 September 1994)

Suit, ca. 1972
Ossie Clark was a favored designer of London from the mid-1960s to the mid- 1970s. Just three months after graduating from the Royal College of Art in 1965, his work appeared in British Vogue. At the same time, he began designing a collection of clothes for Alice Pollock’s store Quorum in Chelsea. With these events, Ossie Clark was introduced to the public and his fashion setting clientele grew. He is most known for his chiffon dresses of mixed prints, designed by his wife Celia Birtwell, but he was also an expert cutter and made exceptional tailored pieces. This suit is a testament to his skill, for the construction and cut allow for a perfect fit, creating a flattering silhouette. The plunging neckline is quite daring, but is a characteristic found in his fresh and innovative work.

At the age of thirteen Ossie studied architecture in school. He later said that the experience was "invaluable" The class taught him the fundamentals of proportion, height and volume. He would later go on to use all of these to great effect in his fashion designs.

Soon after leaving Beamont Secondary Technical School, Clark attended the Regional College Of Art in Manchester, now Manchester Metropolitan University at age sixteen. Ossie had to get up very early in the morning to make the long trip from home to college each day. Anne Clark would give Ossie prescribed pills to keep him awake and alert. This would be the start of a lifelong addiction to both prescribed and illegal drugs.

While attending college in Manchester, Clark was introduced to Celia Birtwell by a close friend and classmate named Mo McDermott. The pair started out as just good friends but that friendship soon developed into a love affair. Ossie also became good friends with artist David Hockney during this period. Clark and Hockney took an inspirational trip to New York together while still at college where they made many valuable connections in the fashion, art and entertainment communities. The friends are widely rumored to have been lovers with a volatile relationship. Clark graduated from Regional College of Art in 1958.

Clark then attended the Royal College of Art in London and achieved a first-class degree in 1965. While attending college in London Celia Birtwell came to live with Ossie in his small Notting Hill flat. Ossie's degree fashion show at the RCA was a huge success. At this time Ossie's design style was heavily influenced by Pop Art and Hollywood glamour. The final line-up featured a dress with flashing lightbulbs down the front which was shown in every major newspaper and fashion publication the following day. The fashion press swamped Ossie with requests for photo-shoots and special order garments. In August that year he had his first feature in British Vogue. A popular shop named 'Woodlands 21' in London's Sloane Street was the first to begin selling Ossie Clark's clothing line.

He quickly began to make his mark in the fashion industry, with Alice Pollock's exclusive boutique Quorum featuring his designs in 1966. Ossie had been introduced to Pollock at his RCA show by Quorum's backer at the behest of Hockney and so taken with the young designer was she that she immediately decided to bring him in as co designer for Quorum. Ossie presented a collection of white and cream chiffon garments that sold fast. Pollock wanted Clark's clothes to have a more organic feel and so commissioned Celia Birtwell to produce special textiles for the next collection. In this way, one of fashions most famous collaborations was born: with Ossie Clark designing clothes and Celia Birtwell designing prints.

This partnership would last for almost all of Clark's career in fashion. Author Judith Watt comments: "Celia collaborated with Ossie. This was a joint effort. People say that she was his muse, which indeed she was, but their work absolutely went hand in hand. It was her designs that he used to create his. I think it's unfair that she not be given that voice"

Ossie was noted, from this period on, for buying six new record albums a week, all from the newest and most popular recording artists. His love of music and art were legendary amongst Ossie's friends. Also at this time Ossie began to take hard drugs more recreationally with friend and business partner Alice Pollock. "This is when his character began to change" says longtime friend Lady Henrietta Rous.

The first full Ossie Clark collection was bought by the Henri Bendel department store in New York. This was the first export of a talented young British designer's work. His simple, elegant dresses were widely copied by the designers on Seventh Avenue.

The period from 1965 to 1974 is regarded as his zenith, during which time he had many famous clients.

In the late 1960s, Clark hit a rich vein for his flamboyant clothing range. The fashion press dubbed Ossie "The King Of King's Road". Clark pronounced himself a "master cutter. It's all in my brain and fingers and there's no-one in the world to touch me. I can do everything myself." Clark's great idol was the famous dancer Nijinsky and his love of dance inspired his clothes to be free moving and not to restrict the female form. This style of dressing became quite popular in the 1970s thanks in large part to the popularity of Clark's clothing. Ossie Clark is well known for his use of muted colours and moss crepe fabric. He also designed shoes, paper dresses, and snakeskin jackets.

While Ossie and Alice were great at creating an image and drawing in the rich and famous, they were less successful at managing a business. Many garments were given away to celebrities or just disappeared from the shop. By 1967,Quorum, the partnership between Alice Pollock and Ossie, was deeply in debt and Alice's financial backer,Mike Armitage,a stockbroker, decided there was little possibility of Quorum ever making a profit and he and Alice agreed to sell Quorum to a large UK fashion house, Radley (run by Alfred Radley). Radley took over Quorum's debts and put the management onto a sound basis. Alfred Radley was keen to maintain what made Ossie special and so he continued to support Ossie's aspirations by developing the Ossie Clark brand and funding large annual fashion shows, expanding Quorum's retail business and distributing Ossie's dresses to leading retailers around the world through the introduction of the "Ossie Clark for Radley" collections.

In 1967 Clark presented his first fashion show under the patronage of Radley at Chelsea Town Hall for Pathé News. It was a seminal turning point in the history of fashion shows which were never to be the same again. He also showed his first full collection in London's Berkeley Square. It was also the first British fashion show to feature black models. In 1968 Clark designed his first of many diffusion lines for Radley, "Ossie Clark for Radley" that made his clothes available to a high street clientele.

Clark was not just popular in London, but also in New York and Paris. He dressed the rich and famous who inhabited the beau monde of the late 1960s and early 1970s of London. Clark got in on the ground floor of many of the popular performers and actors of the time period and was accepted in their circles when many other designers were not. This gave him many advantages to dress the rich and famous. Clark made many stage costumes for Mick Jagger, the Beatles, Marianne Faithfull and Liza Minnelli, among others.

In 1969, he married Celia Birtwell and had two sons Albert and George, together. Clark had long hoped for a large family of his own and his children were a great joy in his life.

Clark freely adopted the hedonistic lifestyle of the 1960s and 1970s: his drug use greatly impacted on his emotional state and finances. Clark and Birtwell divorced in the 1970s. This started a slow downward spiral for Ossie, who never recovered emotionally from the separation from Birtwell and his two children. With his family structure and work stability now gone, his creative output became strained.

However in 1977 Ossie went into business with Tony Calder and Peter Lee and for two years Ossie enjoyed a revival with hugely successful fashion shows, rave reviews and commercial stability. Fashion writer, Ann Chubb wrote ' It is great to see him right back on form again after a few years in the doldrums'.

Going into the 1980s, fashion — British fashion in particular — turned towards the new punk rock craze. Clothing from Vivienne Westwood's shop on the King's Road became the most popular look and one of Malcolm McLaren’s 'Scum' T-shirt text went so far as to include Ossie Clark under the heading 'Hates'. Ossie Clark's romantic flowing gowns were no longer in fashion. His fortunes declined to bankruptcy and Clark largely stopped working commercially. Famously devoid of business acumen Ossie blamed his downfall on banks and the taxman's ruthless insistence on cashing in all his assets. His bitterness at this and a short-sighted determination to sit out the bankruptcy term, along with deep depression, meant he worked only on private commissions which were paid for by barter. A loyal band of famous clients and friends would order a dress and pay for it by loaning a holiday house in the Caribbean or paying for his sewing machine to be repaired.

In 1984 Ossie was persuaded by a friend to go back to work with Radley. He produced some beautiful garments with shoulder details based on sea shells but according to his diaries was then sacked by Radley that same year. A note written by Ossie to the DHSS (pg147) says "I did not leave my position as a dress designer with Firwool of my own accord, as stated overleaf. It was put to me that as my designs weren't selling they couldn't continue to invest in me and I was given two weeks notice on the 19th October 1984. I wasn't offered a choice of continuing to work or not – I was fired." This version of events is backed up by a friend the artist Guy Burch who recalls that Clark told him Radley had found the complicated shell patterns impossible to make commercially.

Although the 1980s were chaotic and nomadic there were brighter sides to his life charted in his published diaries. In January 1978 he had met his second long term partner Nicholas Balaban who was working as a barman at the Sombrero Club in Kensington. With Ossie's encouragement Balaban applied to the Byam Shaw School of Art and went on to start his own highly successful fashion business producing printed T-shirts for high street boutiques and multiples. Although most published accounts choose not to pay much attention to Clark's gay relationships his sexuality was predominantly homosexual. Unfortunately Clarke's continued erratic behaviour eventually led to the relationship's collapse in 1983/84. His depression deepened even more as he obsessed over Balaban, trying unsuccessfully to rekindle the relationship. Only with Balaban's death from AIDS in 1994 and a conversion to Buddhism did he finally begin to rebuild a career and shake off the past. In the early 1990s he trained the designer Bella Freud to pattern-cut and an extremely promising new beginning was the use of Clark's mastery of pattern cutting chiffon and delicate fabrics by the Ghost label. Clark found their computerised pattern cutter a revelation, able to turn initial ideas into formers almost instantaneously.

Ossie Clark is featured in David Hockney's 1970 painting Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy. It now hangs in the Tate Britain gallery on Millbank and is one of the most visited paintings in Britain. His diaries, which he began in 1971, were published posthumously by his close friend Lady Henrietta Rous in 1998 as The Ossie Clark Diaries. In 1999–2000, Warrington Museum & Art Gallery held the first retrospective of his work. Another retrospective was held at London's V&A museum in 2003. A book from this show, Ossie Clark: 1965–74, is published by Adrams Books and the V&A Museum.

In November 2007, Marc Worth, the founder of WGSN purchased the name Quorum and announced the re-launch of "Ossie Clark". The re-launched label's first collection, Autumn / Winter 2008 / 9 collection was shown at the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington, during London Fashion Week in February 2008. Avsh Alom Gur, a graduate of The Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, was appointed as the Head of Design. In July 2009, it was announced that "due to market conditions" the label was to cease operations yet again.

Fashion designers influenced by Ossie Clark include Anna Sui, John Galliano, Christian Lacroix, Dries Van Noten, Malcolm Hall, Clements Ribeiro, Marc Jacobs, Gucci, and Prada. The label Ghost, known for its diaphanous gowns, has also been influenced by Ossie Clark.

Original Ossie Clark pieces are in demand in vintage stores in London.

Pattie Boyd invoked the designer in a 2007 Daily Mail interview, when speaking of her and her then-husband George Harrison's darker days: "at times I felt almost suicidal. I don't think I was ever in any real danger of killing myself but I got as far as working out how I would do it: put on a diaphanous Ossie Clark dress and throw myself off Beachy Head."

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ossie_Clark

Further Readings:

Ossie Clark 1965-1974 by Judith Watt
Grade Level: 8 and up
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: Victoria & Albert Museum (May 15, 2006)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1851774580
ISBN-13: 978-1851774586
Amazon: Ossie Clark 1965-1974

Endlessly innovative, Ossie Clark brought street style to London's most fashionable people. A 'master cutter', he was also a celebrity in his own right, numbering among his friends David Hockney, Patrick Proctor, Mick and Bianca Jagger, Patti Boyd and George Harrison. His collaboration with his wife, the textile designer Celia Birtwell, saw the blossoming of a new young and exciting era for British fashion.

More Fashion Designers at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art

More LGBT Couples at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance

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Tags: gay classics, lgbt designers

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