John Galliano's Second Act: Disgraced Designer Speaks with Vanity Fair

John Galliano in Cannes

Photo Courtesy of cinemafestival /
Breaking silence for the first time since being fired from fashion house Christian Dior in 2011 for a series of anti-Semitic remarks, disgraced designer John Galliano, 52, opens up in the July issue of Vanity Fair on the professional and personal demons that might have got the best of him, had he not lost his job and been forced to seek help.

In remarks released ahead of the magazine's July publication, Galliano granted his “first-ever sober interview” to contributing editor Ingrid Sischy posing for an accompanying spread with Annie Lebovitz.

Explaining his cyclical use of drugs and alcohol, Galliano admits to Sischy, “I was going to end up in a mental asylum or six feet under.”

At his lowest point, the former Creative Director relied on a team of assistants for tasks like holding and lighting his cigarettes and operating the A.T.M. for him.

“I never drank in order to be creative, or to do the research,” the designer tells Sischy. “I didn't need alcohol for any of that. At first alcohol was like a crutch outside of Dior. Then I would use it to crash after the collections. I’d take a couple of days to get over it, like everyone. But with more collections, the crash happened more often, and then I was a slave to it.

Exploring Galliano’s childhood, his early fashion career and the industry that might have made Galliano a slave to his addictions, Sischy describes the self-descriptive behaviors that fueled Galliano’s persisting blackouts, binges, and his ultimate career suicide.
John Galliano Vanity Fair Interview Juy 2013
Photo Courtesy of Vanity Fair

Insisting he is neither racist nor an anti-Semite despite the drunken, “I love Hitler,” rant that left him disgraced in 2010 and resulted in his firing from Dior in 2011, in the interview, Galliano connects drugs and alcohol as the catalyst behind the infamous videotape that went viral with his host of anti-Semitic comments.

“It’s the worst thing I have said in my life, but I didn't mean it...I have been trying to find out why that anger was directed at this race. I now realize I was so fucking angry and so discontent with myself that I just said the most spiteful thing I could.”

Two years sober, Galliano is inching towards a steady comeback since his stint in an Arizona rehab facility in 2011 by continuing to apologize and attempt to make amends with the fashion world and reaching out to the Anti-Defamation League to learn from his mistakes.

“Even now I’m still learning every day how many people I hurt,” says Galliano.

The article speaks with industry heads and friends, including Kate Moss, Oscar de la Renta, Diane von Furstenberg, Elton John, Anna Wintour, Naomi Campbell, members of the Jewish community, the head of the Anti-Defamation League Abe Foxman, and several addiction specialists and major retailers.

Read more from the sneak peek at and get the whole article when the July issue drops in New York and Los Angeles on June 6 and nationally on June 11.

Alexa Mangrum

Alexa Mangrum culminates her love of culture with her passion for writing as a Justluxe Editorial Team Member. An authority on the arts and design world, Mangrum frequently freelances for various publications globally. An arts and entertainment enthusiast in her local community of San Diego, Mangrum is a visual artist as well. Recently awarded as an Emerging Creative of 2013 by Google Inc. and con...(Read More)

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