We've Entered CELINE's Dad Rock Phase

Shocker: Hedi Slimane likes rock music. If that wasn’t already clear, though, let Slimane’s ongoing CELINE photo series, ‘Portrait of a Performer,’ emphasize the obvious with its latest subject, Bob Dylan.

Shot in Malibu by Slimane himself, the 81-year-old Dylan wears some of Slimane’s latest CELINE designs but the shades, leather jacket, and slim jeans are classic enough rock ‘n roll garments that they could’ve been plucked from any moment in time over the past several decades.

Here, Slimane juxtaposes the timelessness of his work for CELINE with Dylan’s own ageless appeal; there’s a reason that dads have been repping Dylan for decades. Heck, even the people turned off by Dylan going electric in the late ’60s were really just dads in the making.

It ought to be said that there’s nothing wrong with elderly rock music. There’s also no hard definition of the term: in the aughts, dad rock was the stuff your dad grew up on: the Zeppelins, Beatles, Eagles of the world.

And no hate to the so-called genre, either (Steely Dan still slaps, thanks very much), but it’s a funny catch-all for rock music that’s dated by today’s high-speed social media churn.

As such, I’d say that Slimane’s CELINE is on a real dad rock kick these days, as the house has tapped The Strokes’ Julian Casablancas and Interpol’s Paul Banks as the other recent entries in its portrait series.

Great bands both, mind you, but old enough to fit the moniker. Fitting for Slimane’s current nostalgia kick, either way.

And, of course, these being rock idols in their own rights, Slimane’s signature snug-fitting tailoring fits Dylan, Casablancas, and Banks like a glove.

The aughts, when Casablancas and Banks reigned supreme, has provided fertile influence for Slimane as of late, so it makes sense.

Slimane’s fashion output, be it at CELINE, Saint Laurent, or Dior, has forever been steeped in musical cues. I mean, he even relocated from Paris to Los Angeles to get closer to that Sunset Strip, Viper Room aesthetic that he so admires.

Burgeoning indie bands and singers still soundtrack CELINE fashion shows, even as they get more TikTok-friendly. Still, Slimane’s old-school inspo ain’t going anywhere: CELINE recently posted to a decades-old Slimane photo of Suicide singer and artist Alan Vega to set the mood for its Fall/Winter 2023 presentation.

I mean, this is the guy who defined the early aughts “heroin chic” movement: music is in Slimane’s blood and, as such, its inextricable from his design process.

Hence, Bob Dylan in CELINE.

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