Schooled in design at Design Academy Eindhoven in The Netherlands, Christopher Sauvé moved in 2005 from Canada to live and work in an old factory in Brooklyn, where he created theater and rock show posters and his own art. Then, the Material Girl got involved: He got a prime gig working as part of Madonna’s creative team in 2006. “I met all the photographers and designers who work with her and really started getting into fashion in New York City,” he says.
But his cannonball splash into the fashion pool came in ’08 when, amid rumors of Vogue editor Anna Wintour’s retirement, he silkscreened her distinctive image onto a tee shirt with the caption “SAVE ANNA.” It went viral (Thanks, Perez Hilton!). He’s still designing clothing which is sold at Patricia Field NYC and on his website www.christopherleesauve.com.
His favorite location is the intersection of fashion and art. For Diane von Furstenberg, he was an art director on her Limited Edition Summer Warhol Collection in ’08. He currently works as an art director for designer Alexander Wang (and has done the same for MAC Cosmetics). These stints have taught the artist about the importance of branding, he says, not to mention the nitty-gritty of producing “photo shoots, directing videos, and how to produce a large variety of goods, art, prints, wearable art, etc.”
Many of his art prints combine fashion icons—André Leon Talley, Tom Ford, Karl Lagerfeld, Diana Vreeland—with mash-ups of commercial images and handmade-looking graphics. “I love punk,” he says. “I collect punk flyers and I like to mix the cleanliness of fashion imagery with the collage photocopy flyer style of early 80’s punk.” The reason he’s drawn to those faces that are so recognizable to the fashion flock is that, he says, “They are like cartoon characters to me–very charismatic.”
The end result is anything but boring. “It creates an organic image that I feel people respond to,” Sauvé says. “Some people like to work with clean slick photography. I like to get dirty and paint, collage and draw.”