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Giorgio Armani, Italian fashion hero. Famous for his irresistible black suits and his women's clothing, that can be categorized as being both rigidly logical and lavishly sensual.

Giorgio Armani's clothing was recently featured in a special exhibition at the Guggenheim Musium in New York. The description reads:

One of the most influential fashion designers of the 20th century, Giorgio Armani has been universally recognized for both radically changing the rules of fashion in our time and creating an iconic vision of modern dress. By removing excess ornament from clothing and translating traditional sportswear looks into business- and eveningwear, Armani has developed the relaxed style that defines the contemporary wardrobe. Giorgio Armani, with an innovative design by Robert Wilson, presents Armani's work and celebrates his legendary career.

It fails to include that immediately upon the decision to feature the designer's work, the Guggenheim recieved a 'donation' of 15 million from none other than Giorgio Armani. Giorgio Armani is the highest paid fashion designer at 100 million dollars last year, more than the second and third, Donna Karan and Calvin Klein combined.

In my opinion, Armani is the Gap of couture-- selling out to conformity and the masses. Armani Exchange is the sole proprietorship of label whores, Emporio is trashy, and Black Label lacks any design revolution that couture is supposed to inspire.

What happened to the real couturiers, who focused more on fitting original clothing to the individual, rather than consumerism? Like Balenciaga, Hubert de Givenchy, or Coco Chanel? They're gone-- Perhaps just another effect of modernity.

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