Following his appointment at Balenciaga in 2015, Demna Gvasalia has been one of the biggest forces in fashion, changing our understanding of luxury and continuously pushing boundaries in the industry.
With a background at Louis Vuitton under both Marc Jacobs and Nicolas Ghesquière, working at Maison Margiela, and launching Vetements together with his brother Guram Gvasalia, there's no doubt that Demna has left a big footprint. So big that the designer has received the Medal of Honor from Georgian president Salome Zurabishvili.
Calling Gvasalia "a model for the next generation of creative Georgians," Zurabishvili also recognized that the award was presented on September 27. “It happened so that this award ceremony is held on September 27. This day is even harder for you, than for others, who have not gone through this period… This is the day, which does not slow down the pain, because nothing can slow it down, but it means that we are all moving forward,” she said, referring to the fall of Sokhumi and losing control over Gvasalia's home region Abkhazia 28 years ago.
Gvasalia has played a key role in the merging of luxury and streetwear, famously debuting the Triple-S sneaker that was the catalyst for the chunky shoe trend, selling hoodies and T-shirt's for hundreds of dollars, and taking logomania to new heights. He also brought back Haute Couture at Balenciaga, debuting his first collection earlier this year.
There's no doubt that Demna's influence is seen throughout all levels of the industry, and we'll be seeing a lot more from the designer in the years to come – now with a Medal of Honor added to his list of achievements.