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John Galliano, who was unceremoniously ousted from the Dior and the fashion industry's favor thanks to assault charges and an anti-Semitic tirade, might be staging a comeback with the help of Oscar de la Renta. The latter designer has invited Galliano to his New York studio for three weeks, according to WWD. Explaining the risky and unexpected move, Oscar said:
John and I have known each other for many years and I am a great admirer of his talent. He has worked long and hard on his recovery and I am happy to give him the opportunity to re-immerse himself in the world of fashion and re-acclimate in an environment where he has been so creative.
Galliano adds the following to his apologies for his demeanor and remarks, which included "I love Hitler" among others:
I am an alcoholic. I have been in recovery for the past two years. Several years prior to my sobriety, I descended into the madness of the disease. I said and did things which hurt others, especially members of the Jewish community. I have expressed my sorrow privately and publicly for the pain which I caused, and I continue to do so. I remain committed to making amends to those I have hurt.
The big question is whether the fashion industry and the rest of the world is ready to forgive him. The Anti-Defamation League, for its part, has chosen to do so, despite its previously outspoken stance against the former Dior creative director. The ADL's director released the following official statement:
We believe that individuals can change their hearts and minds as long as they demonstrate true contrition. Mr. Galliano has worked arduously in changing his world view and dedicated a significant amount of time to researching, reading and learning about the evils of anti-Semitism and bigotry. Along his journey to recovery he met with us on numerous occasions. He has accepted full responsibility for his previous remarks and understands that hurtful comments have no place in our society.
While Foxman wishes "him much success" and calls him a "spokesman against anti-Semitism, intolerance and bigotry," rejoining a highly public industry is a tough feat when this video exists on the internet. Watch this space for updates on the situation.
· Oscar de la Renta Opens Studio to John Galliano [WWD]
· John Galliano Arrested in Paris For Assault and Anti-Semitic Remarks [Racked]
· John Galliano's Brother Sticks up for the 'Misunderstood Angel' on Conan [Racked]