Christian Louboutin receives an honorary degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York
The fashion school awarded Louboutin with an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts diploma following his candid keynote speech at its graduation ceremony on Thursday afternoon. Addressing students from FIT’s School of Art and Design and School of Graduate Studies, Louboutin urged graduates to embrace the values of friendship, freedom, and flexibility in their future careers.
“If I may tell you something today… do not necessarily pursue a very specific target. Be more gentle with yourself, be more supple with yourself. Enjoy the process of every day. It is the journey all of these ‘every days’ which constitute your career, not a precise target. An achievement is not one day in the future; it is the sum of all these moments where you have learned and loved and nourished your passion,” he said.
FIT President Dr. Joyce F. Brown described Louboutin as "one of the worlds most inspired and joyous designers."
"He has turned his shoes, with their brilliant, tell-all red soles, into objects of obsession," she said.
After the conferral of the honorary degree, Louboutin, visibly moved, thanked his parents for their ongoing support. "I owe them a lot.... And it's a good thing," he said.
The honour is the latest instalment in Louboutin’s on-going relationship with the top American fashion school. In 2008, The Museum at FIT and FIT’s Fashion and Textile Studies graduate students produced Sole Desire, the first museum exhibition of Louboutin’s work. Previously, Louboutin delivered a speech about launching a successful fashion business to students in FIT’s fashion programme.
Cosmetics entrepreneur Bobbi Brown and FIT Trustee Emeritus John J. Pomerantz were also honoured in the commencement exercises, during which 4,000 students received degrees.
Past recipients of honorary awards from FIT include Annie Leibovitz, Anna Wintour and Oscar de la Renta.