Laurence Xu: Reinventing Chinese Luxury

Laurence Xu

Laurence Xu

Reinventing Chinese

Reinventing Chinese Luxury

One of China’s leading contemporary fashion designers, Laurence Xu is best known for his haute couture collections that feature traditional handmade textiles and decorative techniques drawn from China’s imperial past.

Xu first came to prominence in 2010 for his dress Auspicious Cloud of the Orient , which was worn at the Cannes Film Festival by the actress Fan Bingbing. The dress was later included in the blockbuster exhibition China Through The Looking Glass at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (7 May- 7 September, 2015).

Yet it was his debut collection, Xiuqiu (Embroidery Ball), shown at Paris Fashion Week (Autumn/ Winter 2013), which first introduced the world to the designer’s unique blend of Western-style classicism and Chinese luxury aesthetics.

It is in his use of traditional decorative techniques and handmade fabrics that Xu has received particular acclaim, not least his creations using yunjin silk brocade — for more than 700 years the de facto fabric for clothing at the Chinese imperial court. It is largely through Xu’s efforts that the prestige of yunjin has been restored. To this, Xu brings a passion for China’s ancient literary and artistic heritage.

Laurence Xu was born in Zaozhuang in northern China and attended Beijing Central Academy of Craft Art (later combined with the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing). He founded the Laurence Xu Atelier in Beijing in 2001 and first built his reputation as a costume designer in China's TV and film industries. His credits include the award-winning film People Mountain People Sea (2011), which was selected for the main competition at the 68th Venice International Film Festival. He was the first mainland Chinese fashion designer to show collections at Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week for two years running, in 2013 and 2014.

Laurence Xu -- Reinventing Chinese Luxury is edited by the journalist Chiu-Ti Jansen and was made by 3030 Press in close collaboration with the designer.