Open main menu

Richard Saturnino Owens (born November 18, 1961), known as Rick Owens, is an American fashion designer from Porterville, California.

Rick Owens
Rick Owens
Owens in September 2018
Richard Saturnino Owens

(1961-11-18) November 18, 1961 (age 57)
  • Rick Owens
  • Rick Owens Lilies
  • Slab
  • Rick Owens Hun
Michèle Lamy (m. 2006)

Early life and educationEdit

Rick Owens was raised in Porterville, California. His parents are John (d. 2015)[2] and Concepción "Connie" Owens. Connie is Mexican.[3][4] Owens was raised in a conservative, Catholic household.[5] After graduating high school, he moved to Los Angeles to study art at Otis College of Art and Design, in Los Angeles, for two years before taking pattern-making and draping courses at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College. This led to work in the garment industry, designing copies of designer clothing.[6]


Owens launched his fashion line in 1994, operating out of a store in Hollywood Boulevard. He moved to Paris in 2003 with his companion and then wife Michèle Lamy, setting up his home and atelier inside a historic five-storey building that previously served as offices for former French President François Mitterrand.[7] His runway collections have been mounted in Paris since then. In 2004, Owens and Michèle Lamy established their own fashion company Owenscorp, and described their business partnership as “asking a gypsy to organise a war with a fascist.”[8]

In July 2005, Owens introduced a furniture collection. Using raw plywood, marble, and moose antlers, the collection is inspired by his favorite shapes from Eileen Gray to Brâncuși to California skate parks. The furniture collection has since been shown at the Musée d'Art modern in Paris and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.[citation needed]

In 2013, Owens exhibited his 'Prehistoric' collection at Carpenters Workshop Gallery in London.[9] Owens' design colour palette in this seven piece collection stretches from white to black, stopping nowhere in between.[10] "The show is entitled 'Prehistoric' – a name that reflects its inspiration, the origins of humanity, it recalls a mysterious ancient civilisation. Its aura is one of spiritual ritual, archaic ceremony and supreme power".[11]

A recipient of the 2002 Perry Ellis Award for emerging talent and the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) in 2017,[12][13] Owens was also awarded the Cooper-Hewitt Design Award for fashion design,[14] as well as the Fashion Group International Rule Breaker Award in 2007.

Owens has authored 3 books — L'ai-je bien descendu?,[15] published in 2007, Rick Owens, published in 2011, and Rick Owens Furniture.[16] He had launched five labels including Rick Owens, DRKSHDW, Rick Owens Lilies, Slab (Defunct), and Rick Owens Hun.[17]

On December 15, 2017, Owens' first museum exhibition and retrospective, chronicling over 20 years of his life's work, entitled, "Subhuman Inhuman Superhuman" opened at the Triennale di Milano.[18]

In January 2019, Owens dedicated his fashion show to Larry LeGaspi, the man he considers his creative forefather. Owens has worked for years on a book about LeGaspi, to be published later in 2019.[19]

Owens introduced Gaspi in his fall and winter 2019 women’s runway collection, "For me, as a teenager growing up in Porterville, California, what Larry LeGaspi did was a huge thing—the way he infiltrated middle America with this subversive sensibility [...] [h]e connects with soul culture—black soul culture and music [...] [a]ll of this stuff coming together was very important to this kid in Porterville." And, "I do think of Larry’s as a kind of biblical story... about the glory of lust and vice, something I talk about a lot, but also about dissipation and decline—which I also talk about a lot... When I was 15, I wanted to be dissipated. And now I am, a little bit. But there is also responsibility."[20]

In January 2019, Owens partnered with eco-friendly footwear brand Veja a menswear sneaker design.[21]

In June 2019, Owens won Menswear Designer of the Year Award at the 2019 Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) Fashion Awards.[22]

On September 2019, Owens announced another collaboration with sneaker label Veja for his womenswear collection.[23]


  1. ^ Socha, Miles (November 11, 2013). "Rick Owens: Breaking the Rules". WWD. Retrieved November 12, 2013.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Rick Owens fashion 2008/09
  7. ^ Yaeger, Lynn. "American Gothic". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 25, 2013.
  8. ^ Wallace, Christopher (April 30, 2014). "Constructing Rick Owens' Creative Bubble". Business Of Fashion. Retrieved August 18, 2019.
  9. ^ Davis, Thomas. "Rick Owens' Prehistoric Furniture Exhibition". HERO Magazine. Retrieved September 12, 2013.
  10. ^ Compton, Nick. "Rick Owens' 'Prehistoric' new furniture collection". Wallpaper. Retrieved September 6, 2013.
  11. ^ Thompson, Henrietta. "Renaissance man: Rick Owens". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved October 10, 2013.
  12. ^ "CFDA FASHION AWARDS" (Press release). CFDA. Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  13. ^ Steff, Yotka. "No tricks, just rick! a candid chat with Rick Owens on the eve of his cfda lifetime achievement award". Vogue. Retrieved May 30, 2017.
  14. ^ "Biography". Bof.
  15. ^ "L'ai-je bien descendu?". W KOREA. Retrieved June 1, 2008.
  16. ^ Marcy Medina. "Rick Owens on furniture, fashion and 'fairy witch' Michele Lamy". WWD. Retrieved December 13, 2016.
  17. ^ Woodward, Daisy (January 19, 2017). "Your ultimate guide to Rick Owens". Dazed Digital. Retrieved August 18, 2019.
  18. ^ Judah, Hettie. "What's in a Rick Owens Retrospective? Whatever He Wants". New York Times. Retrieved December 15, 2017.
  19. ^ Trebay, Guy (January 18, 2019). "Rick Owens Offers Respect". New York Times.
  20. ^ Luke Leitch (January 17, 2019). "FALL 2019 MENSWEAR Rick Owens". Vogue. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  21. ^ "Rick Owens teams with eco brand Veja on sneaker design". Retrieved September 25, 2019.
  22. ^ Layla Ilchi (June 3, 2019). "Rick Owens Wins Menswear Designer of the Year Award at CFDA Fashion Awards 2019". WWD. Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  23. ^ Communier, FashionNetwork com, Adrien. "Rick Owens drops collaboration with French sneaker brand Veja". Retrieved September 25, 2019.

External linksEdit