Givenchy's Riccardo Tisci, Haider Ackermann, and Lanvin's Alber Elbaz are among the top names rumored to be in the running to replace John Galliano at Christian Dior. It's best for business for the house to replace him soon — and considering the efficient way in which executives have managed Galliano's dismissal, they probably won't dawdle on the decision for too long. A look at where each stands so far:
• Tisci seems like an obvious choice because Galliano headed Givenchy for less than two years before he went to Dior. While Anna Dello Russo told Style.com of his fall 2011 panther spectacular, "For me, Givenchy was the best show of the season so far," reviews of his ready-to-wear collections tend to be mixed. Tisci would only say, when asked about the Dior rumors, "I felt this was a strong, positive season. And I'm happy at Givenchy." WWD questions whether he's aesthetically the best match for the house: "Perhaps too dark and brooding for the global behemoth that is Dior."
• Haider Ackermann has an eye for edgy glamour and dramatic silhouettes that might suit Dior quite well, taking the house in his own direction while staying true to the New Look that made it famous. WWD notes, "Ackermann’s red-hot status was confirmed by the crowd reaction to his collection, the season’s most boisterous so far, including gasps, a partial standing ovation and that most elusive of accolades, shout-outs from the photographers’ pit." Ackermann himself told the Telegraph he wasn't fixated on the gossip surrounding him in Paris: "I’m in my little atelier and working and you’re so far away from what’s happening ... I don't feel it." When pressed about whether he would design for another house, he didn't comment on whether he turned down the opportunity to head Maison Martin Margiela, but didn't dismiss the possibility of taking on the gig at a different established house. "There are places that I would like to go, that I might go, but it’s like a love affair — you just have to meet the right person and look together in the same direction," he said. "Sometimes you have a repertoire of your own, and you have something else to express and the code of another house might help. We’ll see."
• Alber Elbaz is adored by critics and editors and possesses the undeniably girlish sensibility that is part of Dior's DNA. But WWD notes he is under contract at Lanvin, where "[h]e’s believed to have equity, and is said to be, for the moment, at least, not interested in leaving."