Last month, it was announced that senior BFA candidates at Parsons The New School For Design would have the opportunity to take a seminar taught by none other than disgraced former Dior creative director John Galliano. Now, however, it seems they’ll have stick with their regular non-famous professors, as the class has officially been cancelled.
In an email from Parsons president David E. Van Zandt obtained by Fashionista, Van Zandt states that “We are writing to follow-up on messages we shared with you on April 26 about the planned workshop with John Galliano. It was a condition of our agreeing to host Mr. Galliano that we also hold a larger forum, which would include a frank discussion of his career. Ultimately, an agreement could not be reached with Mr. Galliano regarding the details of that forum, and so the program will not move forward.”
While we knew there was a petition circulating against Galliano teaching a class—it has over 2,000 signatures—due to his prejudiced remarks, it seems the class’ cancellation has more to do with a dispute over the curriculum and how he was unwilling to discuss the impact his offensive behavior had on his career.
Regardless, Parsons seems to think there may still be a future for Galliano at the esteemed institution. “We continue to believe there is room at Parsons to explore Mr. Galliano’s efforts to make amends for his actions and that members of our community will decide for themselves how to view his contributions. It is certain this would not have been an easy or comfortable conversation but our mission is to provide uncommon learning opportunities that transcend the boundaries of the disciplines,” Van Zandt wrote.
A once beloved figure in the fashion world, Galliano’s fall from grace began in early 2011, when two drunken videos surfaced of him making incredibly offensive anti-Semitic remarks.
Needless to say, he was promptly dismissed from his post at Dior and just recently resurfaced in the fashion community thanks to Oscar de la Renta, who allowed him to use his New York studio. Unfortunately for Galliano, it doesn’t seem like a larger comeback is happening anytime soon.
What do you think—should Parsons have cancelled the class?
Photo via Imaxtree