Haute Coiffure: Charlie Le Mindu
It has often been asked whether Haute Couture is an art, but rarely has that question been applied to or asked of Haute Coiffure—that is if you even knew there was such a category of hair/hairdressing. After seeing and reading this amazingly photographed chronicle of Charlie Le Mindu’s creations, it is clear that he follows alongside the paths of Julien D’ys or Guido Palau and may be an offshoot or product of the late great Ara Gallant. No matter the comparison, Mr. Le Mindu has certainly brought theater, invention, innovation, and showmanship to hairdressing/styling. He surely makes one ponder whether his output is art or fashion or just the product of pure fantasy and one's wildest imaginings.
This is one of those books that broadens the fashion education of the reader and as much as it does provide amazing visuals with a limited amount of text. It’s as if he were a sculptor except that his medium is hair rather than stone, clay, or any other more conventional material. The reader will be mesmerized, if not simply amazed, that anyone could possibly achieve such looks. This man’s talent is testament that almost any creative endeavor can be elevated to an art form when one has extraordinary talent, and is given a chance to show the world one’s genius and create a niche where one never existed before.
Words are very inadequate here as the visuals speak millions of words, but rest assured that the reader will be broadening his or her perspective on what constitutes fashion and/or innovation. Haute Coiffure is guaranteed to extend and widen the reader’s boundaries when it comes to matters of fashion, style, and trend. The book is aimed at those who will understand that this is not the usual fashion fare. The book is not about whether or not you like what he does but rather if you can appreciate what it takes to achieve what he gives to us within the spheres of fashion, art, and theater on so many levels.
The take away here is that this is one of those books that will appeal to the more adventurous of fashionphiles and it is guaranteed to require many more viewings. One might even say that Haute Coiffure is a conversation piece to add to your coffee table as it will surely induce and provoke both conversation and appraisal.