Peter Philips, creative and image director Christian Dior make-up, has known Kim Jones for over 20 years, «since she was at Dazed & Confused. We have always worked together. With his brand, and at Dunhill, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Fendi… if you think about it, it’s an extraordinary thing ». “Kim is a loyal friend,” he says. He weighs every word carefully: “He has an even severe image, in a certain sense, in reality he is a very sweet person. Always kind. Honesty. With a strong sense of humor, funny ».
What strikes you about Kim Jones’s vision?
He really knows exactly what he wants. It is the perfect balance between a creative and a businessman, a synthesis of creativity and rationality. In sync with everything that happens in the world: in fashion, in literature, in art. He is very organized, he trusts the people around him, he lets them do it. And that makes it all easy. An attitude that actually adds pressure, because you don’t want to disappoint him. In many ways he reminds me of Karl Lagerfeld, when he was appointed creative director of Fendi it was an obvious passing of the baton for me.
The images we see in these pages, exceptionally taken by yourself, are a tribute to your more than twenty-year collaboration.
I am honored to have shot this report for Vogue Italia. Before now I had only taken pictures in school! Yes, the looks retrace some of the most important moments lived together on a creative level. The Miami fashion show with the collaboration between Dior and Stüssy, the Dior show at Prefall 2019 in Tokyo with the sculpture of the artist Sorayama, the looks inspired by Judy Blame, but also Kim Jones fashion shows from 2003 and 2005, and the Fall collection 2021: Kenny Scharf’s graphics are the leitmotiv that binds the pages.
MODEL: Clea Beuret @ Women Management. On the face Dior Backstage Powder-no-Powder, an impalpable powder for a matte and luminous complexion, without powder effect. Make-up look inspired by Kim Jones Spring / Summer 2005 menswear collection.
Can you tell us how your creative process develops?
These are always spontaneous conversations. What Kim expects of me is very abstract, take for example the Dior tribute to Judy Blame. The reference was crystal clear. As soon as I saw the collection, however, I noticed that there were many accessories and details and I decided to put only two points of light under the eyes, which on the catwalk would have sparkled like small diamonds. The least expensive make-up ever made! And at the same time in line with the character because Judy Blame used to take trash from the street and turn it into jewelry.
A philological approach, his, which often goes beyond protagonism.
I have enormous respect for the image in its entirety: if I have to keep a low profile and put the ego aside for the whole to be stronger, I do it willingly. Ours is a teamwork. If everyone wants to put a lot of their own, it doesn’t work, it’s like a dessert that is too sweet, the second bite has already tired you.
Model: Jean Meyer @ Tigers. On the lips Rouge Dior Satin Balm, natural, universal lip treatment, with 95% ingredients of natural origin. Make-up look created by Peter Philips inspired by Kim Jones’ Dior Men FALL 2021 collection. Photo @ BVBA PHILIPS P&A.
Is this why we also find, in some ways, unpublished works?
Unpublished in the realization, not in the idea. The Kenny Scharf stickers on the face were supposed to be the make-up of Fall 2021 but then… looking at the silhouettes and the hair I thought it was better to avoid and Kim replied: but I like it very much, let’s do it for Vogue Italia. The look with the red mask harks back to the Dior show in collaboration with Stüssy, held in Miami during Art Basel at the end of 2019. In my mind, it’s a Blade Runner shadow created by bucket hats. Kenny Scharf’s graphics are the main theme of the story. For this reason, even here they find themselves in the gloves that dress the three hands in vogueing pose: they recall a Kim fashion show in 2003 in which vogueing dancers moved between lights and disco ball effect mirrors.
What is the meaning of a creative community in your career?
Olivier Rizzo and Willy Vanderperre were my schoolmates at Antwerp Fashion Academy. I knew Raf Simons even before Kim. There are many artists and creatives who occupy a special place in my career, I am also thinking of photographers such as Inez & Vinoodh and Richard Burbridge. When I graduated, Dries Van Noten was on the jury! We have collaborated together on many shows for a long time. It is when everyone starts talking about their passions that the confrontation, the exchange begins. For Kim it is the same: there has been a sort of gang around him, for many years. When he’s with Shelley Durkan, who’s in charge of casting, you hear them giggle and you seem to see them again, for a moment, at Saint Martins. Even with Lucy Beeden, his right hand man, they are like old school friends. I find it moving to see how they have grown up together, even at work they seem like a group of friends to join at any time with a simple “hello”.
At the opening. Model: Ajok Madel @ Oui Management. It has a buildable effect and Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation fluid texture, in 40 different shades, here in the 9 neutral shade. Make-up look created by Peter Philips that refers to Kim Jones’ Dior Men FALL 2019 fashion show. Photo @ BVBA PHILIPS P&A.