Interview with Charlie Le Mindu – New Book Haute Coiffure
C’est Magnifique! Charlie Le Mindu C’est Super Chic! The Master of haute hair debuts his glossy new book featuring a lifetime of tress trickery, weaving to the gods, and gravity defying work
If it’s true that the ‘Higher the Hair, The Closer to the Stars’ than Le Mindu’s work is outta this world. If you’ve ever seen Lady Gaga wearing nothing but a silky weave, a blond wig styled into a plump pair of pouting lips, or an elaborate headpiece in a glossy editorial, chances are it belongs to Charlie.
Charlie Le Mindu is not only one of the most talented, witty, handsome and devilish hair designers in the world, but he is also the fucking best. An artist and pioneer. His revolutionary creations having graced the heads of Lady Gaga, Florence Welsh, Lana Del Rey, the B-52s, Peaches and Jodie Harsh.
From jellyfish-inspired phosphorescent headdresses, gold-plated wigs, fluffy pink poodle headpieces, human-hair ball gowns and fedoras, to headwear made from mice carcasses!!! Le Mindu has built his career on the surreal, the shocking, the high fashion , the outrageous and the beautifully bizarre.
In 2012, he became the first ‘avant-garde hair director’ at Harrods’ hair salon. And in the past has created several jaw dropping fashion collections, not to mention some of the most theatrical catwalks. Many regularly consisting of a model stomping down the runway wearing nothing but a weave!
His new Coffee table book Haute Coiffure is a celebration of Le Mindu’s life’s work. Illustrated by top fashion photographers, including Ellen Von Unwerth, Rankin and Tim Walker with personal contributions from Nicola Formichetti (Lady Gaga’s former creative director), alongside an introduction by Anders Christian Madsen (i-D magazine). Haute Coiffure follows Le Mindu’s journey from humble beginnings in rural France, via his days cutting hair for drag queens and ravers in techno clubs in Berlin, to his more recent work pioneering the fusion of coiffure and couture in art and fashion circles.
Personal contributions from Peaches, Rossy de Palma, Ellen von Unwerth, François Sagat and Nicola Formichetti (Lady Gaga’s former creative director), alongside an introduction by Anders Christian Madsen (i-D magazine), Haute Coiffureinvites you into the world of one of today’s most creative minds.
I caught up with Monsier Le Mindu for a quick chat about his favourites pieces, and what’s up next.
Over the years you have created some exceptionally elaborate hairpieces. What has been the most over the top do you think, or most difficult to create?
CHARLIE LE MINDU: I think the most difficult was to do a wig for Mikky Blanko. He asked me to do a weave on him but he did not have hair. I had to just glue the weave to his scalp!!!! Lol
Have you had a favourite piece that you’ve made or one that you were most proud of?
I think it’s the one I’ve just done today. I put a huge mohawk on one of the most famous statue’s in Paris!
Do you have a muse or an artist or designer who inspires you when your creating a look?
I love my friends. My muse would be Stylist Anna Trevelyan, Peaches and Rosy de Palma , or Fasty Wizz. They all inspire me.
What music do you listen to when your at work?
Very often Yma Sumac
If you had to pick one wig or style that you’ve created throughout your career that you think is the most chic or most timeless what would it be?
I think it would be the lips, as it’s an object to refer to a it’s of reference and I love that piece.
You’ve worked with a lot of famous people. Lady Gaga, Florence Welch, Lana del Rey, the B52’s. Who would be your dream celebrity to design for?
I think it would be Grace Jones. She is the queen for me
You were one of the early innovators of performance cutting, having started out cutting hair in the clubs in Berlin? How was that time? Do you miss it?
It was great! I still do it in clubs you know. For example I do it for Jeudi OK in Paris and other clubs. It’s a great crowd and I love doing club kids hair!
Your never in one place to long. You moved back to Paris a few years ago from London. Do you think you’ll ever come back to London? What’s one thing you miss about the city?
Not yet. I have an amazing project at Palais de Tokyo here in Paris, so for now I’m not planning too. I miss English humour a lot.
Lastly what can we expect from you next?
I’ll be a Porn Star!
Haute Coiffeure : Charlie Le Mindu
£40.00 | Limited Edition £350.00* Includes Limited Edition Wig
Words by Tracy Kawalik and Charlie Le Mindu
Images and Video Courtesy of Charlie Le Mindu and Roads Publishing