Throwback Ep 42: Andre Leon TalleyI Am Fashion
Andre Leon tally has been fashion icon for decades for years. He was top advisor to anti-torture at vogue before that he worked closely with Diana Freeland. And Andy Warhol but life is often been cruel to Andre. I'm wasn't ordered a beautiful canvas bag from the back pages and it was. The bag was a plumbers canvas bag. But you can send away for this bag. It's eight weeks to come and I had printed on the plummets back. The word chunk cats junket if you look up the word. Because that's what appeals to me. It was promised bag it takes a plumbers junk a junket and I got the bag for the mailbox and open it up and went down the street and just walking down the street in Washington DC on Saturday morning. These these guys they just told me walking just came up and hit me in my face but I was smart enough to run support. Serena doorbell was a strangers door to protect myself and being beaten up by these guys the opposite understand what it was. Just reach out. Hit me so it doesn't matter you know. I just keep going when he thinks happened and no matter what I did. My grandmother always gave. Unconditional love so Andrei is a black man from the south. The son of a domestic who somehow became an indispensable member of the elite global fashion community. He's a large black man. Well over six feet tall. Who made it in a world dominated by tiny white women recently? There was a fantastic documentary. Need about him called the Gospel according to Andrei and before it ran he invited me to come and interview him at five of the screaming. In Manhattan it did it so much fun. Andre came dressed up in these magnificent multicolored Kaftan. Scientists specially for him by Dapper Dan. Now these events all sorts of people stood up and asked him questions including my ten year old son Hendrix. Don't know the trend for now you look and look and look for it. You finally found found it but you feel like the trend is unfashionable. What do you do I feel like? The trend is on fashionable. What do I do I simply go? And where what I think is fashionable the choice and I decided he's the people do do what they think is right. Do what you feel if you decide. It's your daddy does not believe short. I think that your daughter said wanted choice and he wants wears jeans. You must dress the way you feel and I always did it as a child. I grew up with my grandma's House and my grandmother allowed me to be free. You must dress the way you feel. I think if you want to wear a bikini to work you should wear one as long way that job. Wait wait wait wait listen listen you should wear the Bikini as long as you have a beautiful table call to cover it up with Audrey. His brilliant he's steep. He's learned a lot along the way. I tried to get him to talk about how he succeeded in what he did right and all that he's been through he's been through a lot. I really love this conversation. It was a lot of fun I learned a lot. It's Andre Leon. Talley on tour. Getting dressed is a matter of options that are based on the individual's life and everyone can be well dressed if they want to be because dressing is a code that expresses individuality. There's kind of a moral code to dressing and I think that most people live up to a goat as long as they are. Clean decent. Whether choices are you can respect them. So I wouldn't wouldn't tell you to get dressed a certain way I would say. Whatever you wearing is of interest is a jeans shirt is an interesting. Jean Shirt is not just any genes. Clearly you chosen for the cut in a fit. It's not some old fly-by-night Jean shirt from Levi's or something and I just don't think that You know the way the address today. Cool however. I don't think that you need to the only place where people in dressed for me on airports when you get on an airplane and you got some over fed person weighing the Hawaiian shorts from Hawaii Thon And there are t shirts. 'cause shirts now. I do think you can wear your jeans. You can wear flip flops or you can wear flip flops anywhere. They've got stylish ones for your men and women but I think that today the world dresses for Comfort. Yes they function and function and sexual awareness. People want to look hot and sexy. If you go to stores any fast food stores. They want to present hot and sexy. Even Athletic Store Salute Tacky. No that's not. Everyone must look sexy. Everyone's hope someone's GonNa get up for sex vibes but I know that people want to be dressed up to be sexy and hawks and what what what what would you say to me. And Not specifically me as as a man in general if he wants to address better. What does he need to think about? Think about the quality of his shoes for forms shoes number one number one. What should he be wearing? History wearing a very important sleek slick broke or very top Oxford. Very classic very throwback. What about sneaker wearing man wearing man is cool? A sneaker wearing man can really find great fashion sneakers. They've got stores with sneakers from years and they got two thousand acres. You've got gotta pay two thousand dollars for high top sneaker with the bridle bit on the hill and that is cool. I two of them. I wore them once. Because I don't want to miss a month. Never get him again. I the speaker man has many choices he can go online. He got all kinds of options for sneaker wearing and sneakers and cool because NECAS are now made in Napa. Leather calmed the guard song they could be done by designer. Rave Simmons Giovanni she that brand stuff. It's so you can wear sneakers. You wear sneakers with. No socks is a good look. You command high top shoes with no socks. You could wear very expensive shoes with no socks. Most people now into wearing socks that was a big trend forever and particularly with gay men particularly gay waspy man and four filtered over into the Black Culture Gay. Wasserman used to wear no socks in the summer right the Belgian slippers. But now you see that. It's a very big train. It's not just the trend for the waspy man but the gay culture and loves no slots with expensive calf bench may choose to get have good shoes sneakers or shoes because shoes you good white shirt fit into your body. You gotTa have a good clean white shirt. You have to have even a good sweater if you don't have a good jacket you gotta have a good button-down sweater cashmere sweater. I just got have a good pair of trousers. They have to be dinner. They could be just you know blue twelve part of what I like about. Your description is that you're talking about the items and sometimes you are just specific fashion folks. In general I think are two logo obsessed and you didn't mention any brands there. I don't restaurants do dress brands yes. I dress brands but they look like brands. I go for the individual moments in fashion. I look for the thing that stands out that it's not necessarily logo however I will embrace dapper Dan. And that's a brand. You WanNa have it back up actual special and cool but you don't WanNa have that brand logo your back. You know. How is a big moment for people? Some people goes just get the brand look particularly Gucci. What do women in the world? What does the average woman need to do better in terms of getting dressed for an average day? I don't think she she doesn't too much. She probably has to pay more attention to her hair makeup. The anything I think. Muslim are well-dressed today. When you see people walking on the street you they don't have to wear two little heels to be well dress. They have to wear. What makes them feel comfortable going to work? They wear flats. They're very you no they. They have to have a certain kind of handbag purposeful handbags. They have to carry their totes their laptops or devices preferably they should have a bag for just for the devices and then another bag. Just being a handbag with a girly things. The lipstick the comb credit card debts designer handbags. Stylish Fashion Land Bag. But a girl to me is fashionable. Even when she's wearing a knapsack however that net sat must be chosen with choice. It could be a PINK KNAPSACK. It could be a designer driven local knapsack but the knapsack should somehow coordinated with a look at the clothes. She has to coordinate her look her excessive with her knapsack when knapsack seconds accessories. I think that girls in the street of very interesting sometimes girls on the street and not very interesting when they are short much skin too much of a midriff. Too much cleavage. Psomas Dakhil Taj. You know too much build up the bosoms and stuff like that but I like the way people dress basically you know I what democratic never. What does that mean fast is free? You have a free choice as more liberal. It's liberating most liberal can get in the game yes absolutely and has actually make it fun whereas before fashion was dictated to you by rolls when fashion was fascinating I loved the broke through the ceiling in seventy one say one thousand nine hundred sixty eight seventy one. Seventy four fashion crashed and became something very exciting from the sixties youth quake sixties with a young people influenced fashion when black people influenced flashing. Diana Ross Influence Fashion Lady's influence that's brings influence fasten. Barbra streisand influence fashion. That was a moment when fashion turned the curve. It move the dial to a kind of freedom that never been seen before because before that in the sixties fashion although people were fashionable ball but they were most dress by rules. Rules of the mini dress rules of correct dress rules of society and now rules are more able to be broken. Rules not establish anymore. There's no rules you can wear a dinner dress. It's ten o'clock office meeting. You can wear a cocktail dress to work and be accepted the lady wrote about this in her memoirs. She said I'd see the day when women will show up with Halter tops at work and now that has happened when you talk about the rules being dictated and and and the the direction being given from on high you maybe that scene from the Devil Wears Prada yet right. We'RE MERYL STREEP. The end of winter character is telling US yes. Of course we dressed you even though you don't think what do you think about that scene and and this notion of the folks at the top which you agree part of dictating down to the folks did it. Happen existed for a long time. That economy happened economy happiness sixties and fifty S. What about when you were there? No we I was there. It was more liberated. Liberated people made their choices. They read Vogue for guidance. But people may choices before after doing that. When I was in the eighty s in the sixties fashion was still dictated to from the upper classes. Fashion came down to the streets with a great moment of Woodstock and a great moment of the Cultural Revolution of sixty eight. Sixty eight through seventy eight. Fashion was going to evolution that was based on freedom and choices and different cultural signals before that time fashioned was dictated by a certain elite that dictated fashion through the pages of certain high glossy fashion magazines. So if you followed faster to the magazines whatever. Your status wise was like student you read. Mademoiselle glamour married to someone wealthy live. The Park Avenue. Read Vogue and Harper's bazaar John Country and if you really want it to be fabulous and you're blind you read vogue and Ebony and jet and you follow the way people looked in Albany and jets and vogue and then you embrace it really when Beverly Johnson got him to cover of folk in August of nineteen seventy four. And that's when it was a breakthrough moment for the black people Miss Beverly Johnson was the first black woman on the couple of. Oh and nine hundred sixty nine. Naomi Samson because of life magazine Color magazine and they'll be sims also broke through as pioneer woman as a supermodel when she when I was a child sitting at home. My grandma and they'll be sounds was the first black woman in a bell telephone. Commercial Lock is in a Pale. Pink Bill Blass organs address and then she was running around advertising bell telephone telephone commercial and this was a moment and this was a moment of aspiration and inspiration. That was the first time I ever noticed that. A black woman with an advertising on television And Sam's was the absolutely great supermodel in Vogue Life magazine Vogue style lifestyle pages Vogue party pages iteration for Halston. And then you have the moments when you dismiss. Moment of freedom in the seventies was very very widespread it was global. Fashion became freer fashion with people who are running around going to rock concerts. People were being photographed for the youth. For the energy defy talented. The Rolling Stones Bianca Jagger became a big icon in fashion. She was married to Mr Mick Jagger. She wants Mick Jagger on. She had a great influence in fashion but she was often dressed with anti cats on an article clothes. And this was the underground because clock was on a brand name designer. The clock was designed in England and she was wearing little ossie clock halt addresses running around on tour with the rolling stones being written up by cody. That's what I I notice. Beyond Notice Bianca Jagger when she was on rolling stones tour we need radziwill and Truman was writing about the stones. To and the Rolling Stone magazine and there was Bianca Jagger running around a little pristine obstacle. Call to dresses. You know she got married in the south of France and eastern white suit. Wait what does this have to do with in blue? What did it? We'll talk about? I was saying this. You remind me of this famous scene industrial this this group that you were part of did they direct dictate fashion trends people going to really say. Mitt Green this season. No that's like a funny face in a movie. That's all a fantasy people will say. Well this is a big ongoing trend. Maybe it's the print dress in a certain season. That's going to be big. You have to be able to know that before it happens wreck this did you recognize it or did you shape it you recognize it and then embraced it and then you shaped shaped it through the pages of you made it happy. You made the authors offered as the suggestions and up to the individuals who follow that or not. It's been how strong it was You know remains vogue dictated and after that Graham Vote Mirabella's vote was liberating kind of a Rina's vote was a very autocratic point of view about fashioned sedan. Hannah winters vogue is liberated and offers a mini choices and does not dictate it just presents. The best excellence of standards of what fashion is. Because it's supposed to be for a broader class of people verse Asians Blacks Latinos. Wherever you got to read middle-class and you gotta be rich you got something invoked for you back in the day. You aspire to folk but it's vogue is a part of high low moments culture. How long are we there? I started at eighty three and I think I left ninety seven in one thousand. Nine hundred ninety. How did you? I don't know no no no not ninety seven now good lot? Eighty three about two thousand last so long through my face. Chiffon trenches swimming through the navigate to my faith and I had to look up to my faith and my ancestors my roots and stuff to survive that it was hard but I did it with. Grace and dignity and style was hard about politics and political backstabbing from other editors and just the politics people in the industry just hard. Racism is hard to racism. You know I talk about in the dial in the documentary. How Clara Saint the populations of of Director of Reeve Gauche Celera was going around Paris. Calling me Queen Call Right and one of my best friends Palumbo Cosso at the time who was also a great fan of Clara Saint told me this and internalizing bottle them up and I did talk about it until I don. Juan de we kate at the Vogue Archives and talked about that. That was a racist hard thing to take but I thought I was running around Paris and being successful and this woman. It's calling me Queen Kong. It'd be negative to be to be racist. Because she didn't like me. And I finally got to to articulate that thought and recently I particularly in a book Chris Tectonics with a book called Untold Eve and little and I told him the story and I mentioned her name so this was a cathartic moment for me to talk about that. Have you had lots of moments like that many moments that all my life? Yes I mean. Within the professional absolutely people I was very young and on top of the world and running around discussing e Sonera and all of this and bracing Karl Lagerfeld. Luby's you phone. She and by the way who bandage he was a master elegance. He died this year. I'm so happy to see that. Megan went and shows beautiful. Simple dress from the designer. Claire who is six is now designing Meghan Markle. He will be judged Sussex he be happy it his grave to see that. That lady looked so elegant and simple the way Audrey Hepburn looked. She's a new black Audrey Hepburn but like yes true but like Meghan markle. You were quite often. The only black person right in the room and I used that blackness did not use it. But but but did you ever feel alone. Did you ever feel like left out? No I had great friends will remain my friends and faster. I have people cam. You love me. Who saw me I was? They saw my talent. I'm Betty Control scelerisque Muse little life. Ls Karl Lagerfeld. These people embrace me for who I was. They didn't keep me there for my looks because I was taller black. They knew that I had something to say and knowledge. I'll give an instance when one of the great things wants one of my bosses at a women's daily came over to parison. He made it up. He made it up. He's running intimidate me and make me feel small. And he came into a meeting. He said you know they're telling me that you went in and out of every designer Abedin parachute designer bed in Paris. Said it never happened to me in my life and I said that's racist would take a lot to be in and out of designed bit and that was the buck it's like. Oh you're on a good for buck and that was so unmade up. I have never been a design a bit. I've never slept with a designer. I have been in designed beds as guests in his guest bedroom but the designer being in bed with me he or she and I thought that was the most racist thing. And I went to the Church of the Madelyn in Paris and I sat down and meditate and reflect upon what he'd said I didn't confront him with it and two weeks later. I resigned from him. Is where daily because of this man who said that to me and then Mr Fairchild called me please. Please do whatever you want. Stay in Paris. Do whatever you want. Will we want you to be with us will he? They were afraid I was gonna go somewhere else and I wanted to but I didn't get to vote. I was going to go to vote. I thought going straight to vote but I didn't get the job right then. I think it's the fucking eighty-three I said. No thank you and then. I stayed in the past three months in a designer. Bet In College. Guestroom paid for food. But we don't raise but you generally survive racism in the microaggressions by internalizing and bottling up feelings and thoughts of racism. Not Pushing back not pushing back not happy back. I didn't clap back. Being quiet just kept going through this Chiffon trenches knowing that I was doing the right thing to get my work appraised by the pirates in the best my work was validated by the highest people. At Deanna Andy Warhol John Van. Though three were making fashion in seventies John Fairchild was a King Donovan was the empress Andy Warhol was the catalyst and those people adored me and admired me for talent. And that's all I wanted to note that they were I was doing the right thing When you are looking at a scene a moment neuron set and I can see so much happening in the is and the mind and you're clicking and you're looking at the details what's going through your mind those moments when you're somebody's come out. They're wearing what they're supposed to be wearing and processing everything in my mind. I'm processing every single moment. I'm processing the dress. The clothes attitude. I'm processing how this is going to impact the fashion or that individuals collection. I have never note in a fashion show. I don't take notes and unscripted on scheduled withdrawal. I put it up here. I just process when you see me scanning fashion. I'm simply processing. What this is going to mean to wins work or the review. I have to write or the success of his show. So it's going what's going through. My mind is the beauty of it. The individual wearing it is it important. Is it important? The evolution of this person's work is just a great color is inspiring for the color inspiration is a quick process. I would hope it would be like the process is in great directors or something you know people who are sitting around who process things in a very important. One thing that you did at vogue was you made yourself a brand as a non fashioned person. I knew who you were. But you didn't outshine the ball. Never could would would not of her. But but that's an important thing to be able to promote yourself without outshining iconic boss and you. Okay how do you? How do you do that because you instinctively feel it? You feel you feel the boss and you feel how you can stay next to her and be supportive and yet be as equally as important to her next to her and she gave me that opportunity because she don't have knowledge. I wasn't there for my sexuality and my sexual open my mouth. I knew it was talking about the colors the inspiration to the moods I bonded I have a capillary of fashion. That most people will not go. You know John Saatchi. Chee the late. Great Johnny for Saatchi was amazing designer. The late great is Eli an amazing talent extraordinary man so these people the people I got on 'cause my best friends so I went home at night. I was basically be continuing my work relationships on the telephone or dinner My great friend Manalo Blahnik Obama call. My brother separated at birth. I mean I would have five our conversations on the phone with him between Paris and London based on something. I'd seen it for side or I would have conversations with dinner reading on the weekends and her apartment we will. Once we talked for hours city tonight about s Badrul the best place to get its betrayals south of fronts and we will talk about hours and hours about streak in Shanghai Express Hours and hours about Queen Marie Romania hours and hours about Lucchino Visconti your intellectual. Yeah well thank you. I'm glad you recognize that. I know you knew that he knew that. But I wonder if you find yourself surrounded by people who are not no always. This is what my relationship of made a bunch Karl Lagerfeld. I would not have bond it. Had I not talk to him knew what he was interested in my first meeting with lot? Karl Lagerfeld was in. May of nineteen seventy five zero. Tell taking up to the plaza suite with Andy Warhol. I was then fashion editor of interview magazine. What's chest bankrupted and folded sir? This was a great great moment a gateway to moments and Andre. We're GONNA come Karl Lagerfeld Jean. I said I said I wanted to interview but do you know. I sat down and read everything I could possibly mean about. Gallagher fell that could possibly inform myself so when I got to the interview dressed in khaki shorts and a turntable assured an attorney asks necktie and Avia Glasses. Halston that I had this look and knee socks so they said Oh. Did you wear hot pants in the seventies I dare you? I would never be seen these khaki shorts. And then he says tacky shows as said get it right. Khaki shorts this was Jacob Bernstein said I would be caught dead in the pants who everhart friends except the wait is four hot pants. That's no so I sat down to interview and I asked him the proper questions and I was cut to the chase. Eighteenth Century this focus eighteenth century stylized style of Eighteenth Street not only what Marie-antoinette was wearing. But who was a designer? Not Only Leo not address. What rug with walking on Infra side? What puts them copper drinking tea from coughing. What cafetiere was given to Marie Antoinette? For favorite hot chocolate. What was the paintings? What was the of Lebron? What was a screens? What were the tapestries? The fabrics all that stuff was very vital to calls instead of then designing for clothing so at the end of the interview. There's Andy Fred Bob. The whole entourage of the factory against the whole entourage Karl Lagerfeld at the Plaza Hotel Suite on a Sunday afternoon for T. He's come to New York launches Perfume Khloe. Clay was his first big perfume designed for chloe and it was a beautiful beautiful bottle but a lack of flour. Cavalierly and call said come with me to my bedroom. What's happening here? But we were all there and I thought well why do you WanNa see me a bit? Milona so I got up. It was five o'clock in the afternoon I went into the bedroom and in his bedroom with two huge steamer trunks dietrich would carry on Ab- steamer. He came to New York for five days with to FEMA trunks. Seven feet tall seamer. Trump's gone Paris Koya. He opened them. Things were flushed out will come buffalo's our come shirts. Things are flying across the business. Good for you take this. I'm tired of this. I'll take and this he body with me of what I'd ask him he. We become friends and from that day forward. We became the best friends. Foes Andy Warhol. He was fabulous. Even he was lying is child. He was like he saw the world through the child is the child of an innocent is of an innocent child. It was all curious to him. It was all newseum but he was very clever very smart. He was a brilliant man. He loved his money. He went to church every day and thank God was money. He's Catholic. He loved his mother. His mother lived with him in New York when he came to New York. He bought his mother to New York. Live because you grew up in poverty and he was amazing. He was so positive about everybody and everything. No one could do anything wrong. Everybody Grace Jones Schwarzenegger Bianca Jagger Mick Jagger. Everyone was fabulous and so therefore his life was fabulous because I think he was grateful. He had survived that assassination attempt from the back. Before I forgot to the factory. He was wonderful. You always going to dinner with a tape recorder in his pocket. You have to be very aware of that. He used to always take a camera. He would snap you just like he. Did you had to be aware of that but you had to be very careful. Senate dinner because he would be here. Have checked so the diaries. This went against the wall. Diaries edited by Pat Hackett but he was great. He was great. Unconditional supportive whatever. You wanted to be a do at interview. Did you accept when he wanted you to piss paintings? That was a series of piss paintings. he did they were in the Bobo in parison when he started the piss paintings He there was only one person doing them. Victor Hugo also lover and Victor Hugo with haul out his penis pee on the canvas and they were still screening Andrei commentator the pay spending crazy. My Grandma's grandma. When it comes out crazy go back and continue work. Did you learn more from on winter? Do you teach her more. No I learned from winter grape when things be precise. Don't wait time a meeting. The goes along the nine minutes. Make it up fast. Don't change your mind go to lunch. Lunch is over in less than fifteen minutes. Food is not important to her and the first time I learned that we went to lunch one day. We left the office to go to lunch at one thirty. We were back in office by one fifty and we sat down for lunch at Italian restaurant. I don't remember what I did not have much. I think I was like. Oh spoon fast fasttrack fasttrack shoot obsessed with vogue. She's obsessed with the. She knows her trajectory. She knows what she's going and she does not change her mind. She does not suffer change. Well let's think about this. We used we used to go for the whole weekend after the fashion shows. We go for the whole weekend and start on Saturday morning. Looking at flights in those states should look at slide box and be looking at bill. Blass for from seven o'clock nine hundred four hundred trying to bill blass rest. We're GONNA photographs without incident. We know why this this this you say. I like that dress address by stunt. I learned from a capacity of decision making precision and a kind of court protocol that I would associate with the highest levels of the court of her side. Wouldn't the entry navigating how to navigate through the borders politics political intrigue the Fashion World? She always knows how to come back around full circle when as little precise drama of something when people have had spats with designers and things like that I mean yes you wonder. How is it that she's been able to stay atop because she's been able to stay atop although the she is the only person she's been a long anyone at vogue? Yeah and it's because she is a decision maker and she's a precise and she follows her instincts and she's very serious about it to think he gives a lot of thought to folk. What did she teach? What did you teach her? I told her what I thought. Never quite the discussion. I think I taught her perhaps a bit more hard to be free and to be more spontaneous. You have a point of view. You are known in the fashion world for having a point of view. What is the Andre Leon? Talley point of view wide. While these people need Andrei in the. Thank you for saying that Tori and I really appreciate that. Can I do think that's important? I think that I might have taught her how to approach the world. The power world of fashion that people who make fashion on top with spontaneity and with being real inauthentic like maybe I could go to see Colorado fell and I could get him to laugh and maybe I could get called fell to change his mind about something because his he trusted me and we were friends because instinctively he was a friend. We're no longer that close because life is changed call with friends. I say up until four years ago and close close close friends I went through. Hell would call a felony with to hell with me. My grandmother died nineteen eighty nine and in in in in in February and Karl Lagerfeld Lover Shocked by she had died in. Nineteen eighty-nine that Christmas. We were both in grieving and mourning same. Mrs Reeling died in eighty nine so I lost my grandmother. Mrs Freeman and Carla Lost Jock. And we went to he said for me on the Concorde to come to his house for Christmas and I got the on Christmas Eve and I stayed for three weeks until two collections and January and guest bedroom. You know he house with many guest bedrooms so there was Christmas Eve dinner and they were beautiful presence that he gave me the most beautiful Faberge Diamond Pin with the diamond spelling. My name a LT waiting on them but he gave it to me in a little paper. Cup this a little paper Cup and I still have that. It's the most beautiful thin and we sat there. I would see him except for lunch. He come down for lunch lunch. What's called around him sometimes. Come down for lunch at four o'clock and we just have to sit in our rooms and wait for him to have lunch called and then dinner might be at ten o'clock because he was working sketching and that was a great friendship and Anna. Winter knew that that she could depend on me to get the beef. Where's the beef? Yeah exactly your ability to charm people and to get the people to give you the anti trust you to give you the good. So how have you done that? I've done it through my natural being my roots. I've done to him am just is me I. They saw in me the people who really matter it and he's still matter. Tom Ford so this to me. Mark Season Me Donna. I bring seizes mutual products. Season me. Bez you fall. She saw it in me. Instinctively people gravitate to people have something that is special and through the attitude of the way it's presented they can gravitate towards it. I mean I. I'm impressed so many people that impressed me and I have been oppressor to them based on something knowledge and it wasn't based on some sex and some racist sexual. No I'm no sex Bob Dole healthy fans talking about. But you have to Gab. And you could talk to anybody right space of my knowledge in basic humanity. Yeah I love human beings. I love people. I love people. I I always admired you. I might you your show. Who's the call cycle by that time? That restaurant with the England and call people at my just my tiffany Haddish extraordinaire. And she saw me out. She saw me out. She thought I didn't know she was a at the ball. And I said come here. And she came over to my table and said I think marvelous success is great. She had her assistant called me a week later. Miss Hatch would like to send you something. What's your address? I said we'll have. I said anything negative about her whether she said she just likes to send you something for having been so nice to at the. I've got this note from tiffany. I looked in your eyes and I saw the man it was to the next level. I was so shocked. You didn't do was and I said well. That's so nice. She sent me these flowers and I invite her to something and her sister what. She's too busy to come back for you on Sunday night to go to Avenue Venice Party and the rate for quitting sugar and then tiffany. I said well. This tells tiffany that she can't make this date. Maybe she can make another date where I'm going to evolve ball the ball vote. Ball's coming back. You know the resurgence of the ball culture. The ball culture to get up that means of course you do and So she wrote back. Tiffany says on applying back for that. I'll be there Sunday I have to wear. I'm coming back to party and we went to that party and we went to the Party and we stayed until the end with Vernay and that is what is all about them and that is how I think Andy saw in me. Mrs Freelance. So I'll be the first and foremost I loved and worshipped Mrs but when I got to the Museum. Oh my God. I was hiding behind calms when she would walk through. I didn't even want to go out and see her. So they said Mrs Robinson coming now down the steps to the museum because him institute so this will come in at one o'clock and but she the walk down from street level to the basement of the costume institute was a long wall. They'd ring up from street level and say MRS is on way down so it took me time. I had time to hide on. Colleges is walking through very dramatic performance but one day. I did something and I was given an assignment and Mrs Renoir through and I sit took hit behind the column to see her response and she stopped. She looked at it. She kept walking five minutes later. I was told by an secretary. Please come in and see Mrs Freeland. She like to see you. Mrs Ask. Who did this thing this cost with discuss them and Hispanic and slit and they said what Mr Talent. He's volunteering and she called me in and she said what is your name. Andrei insured many big on yellow legal pads so big that I could read it from that side of the Dez Andrei Help them and put a pencil down and she stood up and said you will stay next my size for the duration of Mike Show. You'll be by my side every day because you had put together an outfit that I didn't know what the Hell I was doing that she liked. Does she liked the way? I had rained on the mannequin. She just liked the way. I had put it on a mannequin. It was a costume from non-attorney non-attorney call the practical projects where she's a goddess and she's thrown into a big pit fire and it was sort of like a pack bond metallic swimsuit with fringe. But the suit was presented to me in a box and had been come undone all the fridge the metal French and so I was given that balks at a pair of pliers and the I got I went and I put it. Together I put it on a mannequin combine review and. She saw it before she knew who didn't ask who did it. And they said I did and then she called in and then we were became great friends but always listened. I always listened hobbies listened. What's that mean? I always listen to what people said. I never never gave an opinion. I always listen. I never given a painful. I was asked what I'd have opened my business relationship that oh no to the now. You had to listen to what Mrs Realm and saying 'cause she's giving you the narrative to this to eight Meghan to create that moment in time with address you have to create the vision of the dress in the film. So what are the keys to your career? Success Politeness Charm tenacity and homework research. Yeah Yeah I could spend around a dime. It's been around a dime review of collection. I would spin it around on a dime. I'd run right back to the office. And just sit on the telex machine and those days. We had telex machines. Give it to work on now. That's before my baby you had. It's like doing foot pedal organ and you have to sit there and Bang on television at night by yourself. And it's like a big machine and my things were filed from Paris by telex and I would sit there and write him from my memory and seventy eight son rock. Why don't you take notes because I've processing? I don't need to take a note. I'm looking at the close people. Scribbling and rights gap drawing scribbles up. I'm looking at the things go by. I'm looking at the narratives going by me. I'M NOT GONNA put my head down. I WanNa see what's going left to right left right back and forth is Mooney creating the attitude of porgy and. Bess is key heart his. She's these girls walking how these hats. What are these? What are these hats? Mean who what did Shofar Meeting Paloma Picasso's wedding what is she picking a red hat to wear to a wedding and a red blouse and a white jacket on a black skirt. What does that mean? I mean? She's unique and individualistic. She's culture. She's a daughter. Pablo Picasso therefore she can wear Red Satin Blouse me the wrong to have first sweating with white wool jacket and a black wrap skirt lined in red matched the blouse as some high heel ankle. Strap shoes and it's called style and you don't have to take notes. You sit there and you look. The movie is passing you by. You might blink. You might miss something you might fall asleep. You might do this and you might miss it. Every time I see a show I see it go by and I realize that something I can relate to even were show. I could find something good even the worst fashion show. I could find a good piece. You always have a good way of expressing your opinion. Not You know I. It's I remember when used to do full frontal fashion yes and my wife works in Fascist fashioned and so we would watch that like religion. And I'll never forget. We were sitting there on the couch. And you were talking about Nicholas Ghesquiere and you said he brought the water to the well and I don't know the history of fashion. I don't know what that means what I just got a of an emotional needs. I know what is what is the will but the way the not the not getting it historically correct but the way you of the moment of the moment was important. He bought the water to the well. He goes to the well. What else said that? Somebody else might have said. He re he redesigned fashion. He brought the water to the well. So that explodes in highs. I came up with people who read and Mrs Villain was steeped in Literature. Mrs Really was loving literature. Mrs Raymond Knew Isaac Denison. She was a friend. Baroness Blixen. I recall when Mrs Raymond's dim there. Mrs Regner loves the Written Word. She loved to read. She wanted to read the novels. The details agenda the Japanese novels the Princess Shea Shotgun. What's a favorite book for? What did you what did you love? I love very much gustave Flaubert Menam bovery. That was one of my favorite books. One of the first books have loved. Don't ask me why I guess she was a fashion victim. You know killed herself because she ran up debts I love reading about Gustaf. Love Their Selah. Mbo I love very much. Truman capote my favorite. Because I loved him for these from the south. He groped on suitcase with similar to call blood. No not in cold blood Thanksgiving memory favorite book. The best book ever read Thanksgiving memory because he was a grandmother. They were similar his on. Suk WITH BAKE. These fruitcakes and my grandmother and great grandmother would make fruitcakes in the fall and then they would not eat him until Christmas time they put cheesecloth over them in soaked them in Bourbon to keep them moist on the covered dish and this was a very important tradition. And did trump capote wrote about that and I discovered that and I thought that was brilliant and I got to meet Truman Capote. I used to go to his poverty. Union Plaza. What else do you read that you loved? Well I love very much reading. Stefan Joie I'm Marie Antoinette. I love reading about versatile eighteenth century France. I love biographies on Great People. I love the autobiography of Frederick Douglas of a slave. I thought there was really keep it on my desk. I remind me and I Love James Ball and recently I love anything that Tie Neat Nishi on easier. He wrote the was wonderful books and I also loved his great essay recently in Atlantic on Kanye West Limo Kanye West and I think that we all should pray for on. Us We should not abandon this man. We should pray for them. We should pray for him. He needs prayer. Why is Kim? A FASHION ICON. Because she's beautiful beautiful women. Well there's lots of beautiful. Whatever if you beautiful women with Kim is Kim has of reality showed it made a millionaire. Some other created the show fashion icon. Because she she trusted we've all she had for such and Vivienne Westwood and Smith who else she wants to that and she looks good in the damn close and you cannot say what makes a fashion icon festival. Client FASHION ICON SUGGESTS HAPPENED THE WAY. Dutch success is going to become the new. Black Audrey Hepburn. She is going to be that woman. I watched a film of her online before I got here when she goes into the palace with the Prince. They're walking up the steps to meet the the Prince. Charles was birthday celebration after a look. She's got the shape. She swung. Yeah her heels stockings. The made the point. She's sacrificed. She's wearing stockings. Well of course she's supposed to wear stockings. What is this racist Shet? She's wearing stockings. What else you're supposed to wear but sima stockings yields the way. She's walking her heels the way she's put a hat on the hat has a certain rakish the heels the way she has her hands the delicacy of her. It's very important. You must just quietly observe these things as they go by you the way her wedding pass through the whole world the television and made a great impact. Kim has had that in back. I I saw Kim. When she was little Reggie Reggie Reggie Raiding Rageh Ray Ray j branch other and she was backstage at a fashion show with him holding his and then I saw when she was pregnant with the baby this she have a baby before yeah should have been what she got married to a calm yes not just she had a baby. She's my coffee right yes she did. I don't I don't know I don't follow Kim. But she came to the ball he of pregnant. But as you've all dressed on and I know she had that baby four little north was born before she married cardiac because I think that baby north was at the wedding in Florence. Yes yes yes. Why don't you do your homework you can or you mean before the wedding not before Cognac. No before the winning yes. Yes yeah I thought you meant no baby with somebody else. Oh but but I I mean I feel like her being this raining. Fashion icon is partly sort of like it's part of what today is which People Watch. Television reality shows are so popular. I never understood the reality shows that can make you. I mean those Atlanta housewives. Those housewives of Beverly Hills housewives can go figure as a man in fashion d ever think. Do you ever feel a little envy for the options that the women have because they get to have much more common. Alexa game than the envy put. Women have men have the great options to they. Just don't use them. Men have the options as well. They have so many. Offerings men can be so fashionable. You know look at Elton John. Look at the man who fashionable today. Who the men that we should look up to in terms of fashion ability lake kept. Say All right offhand with men I think What may are there. Let me see migos lives in your neighborhood. Migos to group D like the migos their heart the way they dragged fabulous neighborhood. Well that's Brooklyn. They live in Atlanta. Oh someone told me that the Brooklyn. I think you'd like neighborhood like your people really talk. I liked it the way system. When they're wonderful they're one and another woman wiz. Khalifa is absolutely the best healy wiz. Khalifa is so elegant and so eloquent and you know. He's smoking a lot of blunts elegance and I've seen I've heard the word elegant of his Co. wages a walk up to the ball and you will then agreed with me. Where's Khalifa elegance? Okay yes migos Wiz Khalifa. I you know who is really elegant. Jaden Smith that gender fluidity it is various Bari. Jaden Smith is extremely inspiring Young man you like that that barrier breaking Jaden Smith gender barrier breaking. I don't think we as gender barrier breaking he's fabulous snow of course but but you jay choices for clothing. He's iconic representative Louis Vuitton brand. He doesn't farewell he kilt and he can put on some killer boots. And make it happen. Looks Credible incredible? What's your superpower? I don't have a superpower. I don't know what that would be. I don't believe that I don't know what can I don't know we can make a break me in that situation. I don't I sincerely answering truthfully I do not know I just go for it. I just get up and go every day when I go through as to. What do you say when you first are waking up and coming? I'm rubbing my knees trying to get the circulation and sixty nine years old. I'll be seventy October F. I live to see it and then I wake up and I say a little species scripture silently and I get up and I go to my computer and my bedroom and do about thirty minutes of emails and then I navigate down. I know what I'm GONNA wear. Because it's basically the same thing every day mini versions of them. And then I just navigate through the appointments after through. I try not to be stressed out the touched the car and traffic and all that crap but I basically do the same thing every day. Are you optimistic? yes so a degree yes. I am. I'm up to signal personally on a personal level. Not Everything will be okay in the end but it's a difficult struggle to get through the day but I'm not about the world. Sure the world said Europe to by you and your ability to achieve and I'm very optimistic about that conquer. Very optimistic about the. I'M NOT OPTIMISTIC BECAUSE STILL PEOPLE. Don't get me with this film. People will still will not get me. They don't get you. Tari of you would have been. We both could have been rich. They don't get us. They don't get black men. Come on but yeah then. You have successfully made yourself indispensable in a world of of subjective opinion. Thank you thank you dominated by small physically small white women right and you've been twice as your how tall you six six six six six black coming from an entirely different world no threat. No sexual threat. None none none. How how did you get along with being the only gigantic black man in the room in a room full of energy industry? All of it was difficult. I well moments in life alone insecure for thirty the Ritz Hotel in secure alone difficult. I can hold my own talking to Anna Winter. I can hold my own talking to the baron. That's the rock child home to the Baron. Airdrop child a barrel. The DAY SOUTH SLUMBER J. Andy Warhol. But it's difficult to go back home and you feel insecure. You feel doubtful. You're going alone. I've never had a love. So I'm sitting there in the guilt. Guilt hell of the Ritz. I was always guilt L. Gilt plated hell of the Ritz Hotel when I was coming fashioned in Paris talking to them. No Lennox hours to call hours about something silly or something serious like as betrayals or eighteen hundred and then. I'm sitting there eating meadowlands. How is it? You never had a lover because I never take time as afraid afraid of what I don't know I guess I was just eight beginning mostly to mostly commitment you were in the nightlife. You had tons of friends dressed very well. I'm sure that that people were coming at you offering coming at me. No no no no but I was part of that world that glamorous world the world of fifty four the world the parents the two. I was very much a part of Greatest Jones. I imagined surely there must have been somebody who just tickled your funny bone so my race. Jones did at one point but then she was very aggressive about it and so I pulled back. You dated Grace Jones. I didn't know that she was very aggressive in her trying to seduce me but I thought that we did not date no back from Greece because she was Physically intimidating you're at the point of Grace Joe. We associates. But I didn't know it and I wasn't having it I regret it now but anyway I exactly but no house. There have been no one who you like he calls. I was busy spending time with people interested in Me Sexually Tian. Arenas you think I can talk for hours but dinner rhythm about Esera drills and have time to go out and then pick up someone go have to date. No I'm focused on. Dan of remodeling icicle read entire books to the home on the weekends. Do you think I had time to go and read that book until four o'clock in the morning is this career is possible because you haven't sacrificed the time or because you have sacrificed the time for a relationship breath. I gave my time to people that matter to me. You dated your career. I guess you could call it that. This was getting dressed to go to Brennan's houses anything in the world that was ritualistic. It's like going to the Korver side when I got freedom for alone I do. I was never invited. Jennifer eight Jennifer six. I got invited to Oscar Francois de la Renta's House Jennifer eight with Henry Kissinger and. That's because talked on on Alexander Lieberman granting but I did not focus as much on that. It's going to dinner at his house alone. Because the compensation and it was going to be intense it was going to be an intense night and I was gonNA learn a lot. We got off the track gigantic black man in a world of tiny white people. How did you modify? How did you get through? How did you make them feel comfortable with you to let you in? Because I share knowledge and politeness gentility agent. I agree with them and gave my opinion at I had support. Help Stop Teddy taking pictures. You took enough pitcher. You got my phone. Listen I created scandals. I remember once I was at his house. And Paloma and her then fiance Rafael Lopez on jazz and his best friend. Havi we were in the closet of dressing room and we just come from some event and I had to go to a Valentino. Black Tie dinner at maximes and call a-x-i-o-s houses on the left bank in maximums on the right bank and my apartment was way down in the fourteenth on who they plant so. I've been to call logos felt house for a cocktail party. And I was sitting talking to Paloma and Javier and Rafael and I said Oh my God I've got to go. I'm on assignment. I've gotta go cover Valentine's black-tie dinner for his fragrance and I got it. I don't have time to go home and change clothes and call it. A fill came to the rescue. It's like superwoman. He's dollar get onto change clothes on and take my cosmetic dressing gown with friends. Take Care of you. He's gotTA white wouldn't taking my trips and put the Black-tie take this jasmine dressing. And just where you can have. That was and he gave me a beautiful black Kasmin dressing gown with a very beautiful edge with beautiful long friends with the rap. Tassell belt and tax it over to the maxine to the black tie dinner and no one told me that. I was not that in a bag of chips and I walked in the magazines and jaws drop. She like in the movie. Zhijie when they come into the maxine jaws dropping with Eva. Gabor comes through such strict all of society drop betty control all of them. There is will tropic. Georgina Brendan Laney and Valentino. And to this day they remembered as a scandal caused Scott and LACI celebrated in. Italian vogue had called sketch me the dressing and it was celebrated in reporting invoke. But when I did it it was considered the oldest tall black man coming maximes. How dairy not where the proper time? A little bit so for me. It was black. Tie Right it was. It was from the closet parents. But what what gives you more joy to walk into the room looking amazing and everyone go. Oh my God. He looks amazing with that. I don't want that moment or to say that thing that everyone goes. Wow that was really smart. No I would prefer said. Wow that was really fun. Wow that's great. It's one point to have fun than to say. Look at me. I'm studying. I don't ever want that moment okay. That's not the woman I strive for. So what drives you? What drives me is people I said to you before humanity. You want respect humanity respect and I want to be a respected in my point of view and thoughts and I got that in Paris. This this is why you have not needed. Love traded away love. 'cause I'm going to be over here. Getting respect they respected me say Taras I had the best and I can tell you. Listen I often look back at. I forget how many great things I did. I mean I went to the raw for the weekend with Michael Trunks and those people have to take my trunks up the staircase of the shuttle feet just like the other cases. What's the hardest thing you had to overcome in your career? The overcome that gateway gain my way that was a big moment interventions to overcome weight gain and I never lost the weight but it took me a long time to realize this what it is and I've got to settle his lungs. Them healthy somewhat overcome. Like that was hard for me to overcome. I lost my grandmother and I considered food in motion. Crutch because food is love you know black people. So that's the hardest thing I think when you lose someone that important to your grandmother your mother. Your Father. Your Lover and Carlos his lover to eighty nine. I mean call greet for years of a shock. You know and shocked about share with the great love of his life. I mean he loved his mother to his father. His mother died when a new car. But I don't think he's. He's took his mother's death is seriously jocks but his mother died at home in bed. You know and No it was. I don't get dressed up to create shockwaves. I dressed up because I like what it feels like. Which is what comfortable and elegant you not. You can be comfortable in Japan Pajamas. Exactly you're not come to you. Look Great I'm not going to go down and go get some crazy. You put it in the tape. The patterns together in contrast and all of that is modern. But what do you do that for you if you don't want? Everyone is the presentation one expresses to the world wants personnel clothing so my clothing is my armor which sizes which says what about your personality. Your arm is security. I guess I go to battle. You can't break the kind break through the chinks because they know they can't break the cheap. You don't seem insecure to me. I know secure secure but I get more of a sense of flare from your outfits. I get a sense but I'm insecure deeply deeply but I will rise to the occasion wouldn't insecure about. I don't know I just feel insecure foster imposter stuff. I guess I feel secure being lonely at about. I miss a about my future and stuff like that. I still need a future. Have Future insecure about you know paying the bills like everybody else is and everything else. I'm insecure because I think the world has tried to break me down without knowing that they would try to take me down. They never gave the full respect that I was doing until the stock metairie must think Kate. Novak doing math having a vision when I see the way responded to talk military it last night and Schoenberg night before the Times Talk Montclair New Jersey Toronto Film Festival. Lock Ma in Los Angeles. Elvis Mitchell is not to be believed people respond and I sit back stage and this is them laughing and they stand up and clap. When I come through so this film. It's more about a black man in the segregated. South bounces out of the south into this world of high fashion and makes it and survives. I did my gold plated. Hell I made my own though. Played it hell and I will climb up and stay on top of my gold plated hill as best. I can until the day I die what what constitutes the gold plated guilt? The guilt of being involved the guilt of being the fashion icon of being a fashion connoisseur fashion knowledge creating exhibits in museums. Which I've done Being of adviser to young people all of that he does come with a lot of security and the gold plated. Hell is I run around the world but a lot of people. I'm a lot of private jets. I'm swinging up. And down the private jet lanes lyles. I've covered the Oscars for e t. Iveco with the Oscars the Golden Globes to et and. Nothing comes to meet. I don't get anything like a reward for this. You know I do these moments that are give to the world. Something that is a slice of entertainment. But I come away feeling into thanks to Andre Leon Talley for several fantastic interviews. Thanks to you for listening. The show gives you fuel to power your dreams because you can use your dreams like a rocket ship to blast you into a life. You never imagined you can make your dreams a reality and this show can help on twitter at Tora on Instagram at Torrey show. Please stop by and say hi. If you like. The show Subscribe Rate Review. All that bread were tele friend Tori shows written by me Tori and produced by Chris. Colbert and the Young Turks with help from William Jolly Jason Wallace candidate Nicole in our photographer. Chuck Marcus. We'll be back next Wednesday with more knowledge from amazing folks because the man can't shut us down.