Last Years

Clark's early success did not last. In 1974 he separated from business partner Alice Pollock, and was divorced by Birtwell, who had grown tired of his affairs with men. In October 1974, Clark was the featured speaker at a fashion forum at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London; he discussed marketing opportunities for the future on that occasion while admitting that he was living the lifestyle of a rock star. Unfortunately his work became disjointed by depression and alcohol abuse in the mid-1970s and appeared in magazines only intermittently. A relaunch in 1977 was not a success because Clark's clothes were not in touch with the London of Vivienne Westwood and punk style. Clark had little business sense, and declared bankruptcy in 1981. Shortly before his death however, he

Clothing Mid October London
Ossie Clark ensemble. Clark utilized numerous different materials in his designs and showed a preference for garments that were tied or buttoned, rather than zipped. © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/Corbis. Reproduced by permission.

had started to make clothes again. Clark was stabbed to death in October 1996 by a former lover, Diego Cogo-lato. Designers working today influenced by Clark include Anna Sui, John Galliano, Christian Lacroix, Dries van Noten, Marc Jacobs and Clements Ribeiro.

See also Adrian; Biba; Cardin, Pierre; Celebrities; Galliano, John; Lacroix, Christian; London Fashion; Rhodes, Zandra; Vreeland, Diana.

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