How Alexandre de Betak brought storytelling to life via his outstanding catwalk sets

Christian Dior, Fall/Winter 2013 by Raf Simons, Red Square, Moscow. Picture credit: © Yuri Palmin (pages 24-25)

The fashion catwalk is a place where storytelling comes to life. Each designer hopes that through the clothes he or she sends down the runway, you will be transported to another place and time, and understand a very specific vision he or she is trying to communicate, a conversation to engage you in. But that story, conversation and vision is not just seen through the clothes, the whole catwalk needs to convey the message.

Enter Alexandre de Betak. For those in the fashion, visual merchandising and retail worlds, this name is revered, and rightly so. Alexandre de Betak through his company Bureau Betak has created some of the most show stopping catwalk sets that editors and buyers have ever laid their eyes on. That stunning Dior show, Raf Simons’ swan song for the brand in the middle of the Louvre? That was Betak.

Betak: Fashion Show Revolution, Phaidon, open at pages 48-49, showing Christian Dior, Spring/Summer 2016, Paris

The futuristic dome for Louis Vuitton in Tokyo? Yep, again that was Betak.

Finally now, he has decided to publish a book, which brings together all the amazing sets that Bureau Betak has created over the past 25 years. It is packed with words of fashion wisdom from the man himself, including the trade secrets of how those sets came to be.

Alexandre de Betak. Picture credit: courtesy Alexandre de Betak/Phaidon Press

Our favourite quote though, is this:  “The fashion show is a creative form of expression. It is artistry and, with its global reach and immediacy in the digital age, it is a platform to communicate attitudes about politics, sexuality, and about religion and family, a place to champion causes and concerns. It is culturally revenant now more than ever.”- said Alexandre de Betak.

Betak: Fashion Show Revolution is out now to purchase.

Mango, Fall/Winter 2011, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris. Picture credit: © Daniel Beres / Centre Pompidou, © Richard Rogers, © Renzo Piano Building Workshop Architects (pages 44-45)


Know what’s next. Become a WGSN member today to benefit from our daily trend intelligence, retail analytics, consumer insights and bespoke consultancy services.