French fashion designer Pierre Cardin dies aged 98

French fashion designer Pierre Cardin has died at the age of 98.

France's Academy of Fine Arts, where Cardin was a member, announced his death in a tweet on Tuesday.

Cardin was credited with revolutionising fashion in the 1960s and '70s with his avant-garde style, space age designs and love of geometric shapes.

He was also a savvy businessman who took fashion branding to the masses.

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Paris couturier Pierre Cardin and models wearing ensembles from the summer 1985 ready-to-wear Cardin collection pose, Sept. 24, 1984. (AP Photo/Alexis Duclos)
French designer Pierre Cardin poses before presenting his 2009 spring/summer and autumn/winter ready-to-wear fashion collection in Theoule-sur-Mer, southern France, October 6, 2008. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard (FRANCE)
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin speaks during an interview with Reuters in Paris October 13, 2009. Cardin will be named Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on October 15, 2009. Picture taken October 13, 2009. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE ENTERTAINMENT FASHION)
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin, 97, poses with designer Pierre Courtial, his nephew Rodrigo Basilicati and former modele Maryse Gaspard during a presentation at his Studio Pierre Cardin in Paris, France, February 27, 2020. Picture taken February 27, 2020. REUTERS/Charles Platiau
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin poses in front of his store next to his museum called "Past-Present-Future" in Paris November 12, 2014. The museum will open on November 13 and will show Pierre Cardin's 60-year career and creative passion with some 200 Couture pieces, as well as hats, shoes, pieces of jewellery and furniture. REUTERS/Charles Platiau (FRANCE - Tags: FASHION SOCIETY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin speaks during an interview with Reuters in Paris October 13, 2009. Cardin will be named Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on October 15, 2009. Picture taken October 13, 2009. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE ENTERTAINMENT FASHION)
French designer Pierre Cardin poses with models at the end of his 2009 spring/summer and autumn/winter ready-to-wear fashion collection show in Theoule-sur-Mer, southern France, October 6, 2008. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard (FRANCE)
French designer Pierre Cardin poses with models at the end of his 2009 spring/summer and autumn/winter ready-to-wear fashion collection show in Theoule-sur-Mer, southern France, October 6, 2008. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard (FRANCE) also see GF2E4B50WPN01
French designer Pierre Cardin displays a creation during the presentation of his men's Spring/Summer 2007 fashion collection in Paris, July 4, 2006.
French designer and owner of Maxim's Pierre Cardin presents a bottle of Chateau Rotschild 1945 with a "V" for victory on the label, May 6. Cardin has decided to sell 8,000 out of the 100,000 bottles stored in the cave of the famous Parisian restaurant Maxim's, in an auction organised by Maitre Tajan auctioneer house next June 4.
Veteran French fashion designer Peirre Cardin (75) poses with some of his design creations at the opening of a retrospective exhibition titled "Past, Present and Future" at the "Espace Pierre Cardin" January 17. Paris Spring/Summer 1997 High fashion collection shows start on January 18.
File photo dated 23/02/66 of Pierre Cardin demonstrating the curtsey to some of his models at a last rehearsal before showing his collection to Princess Margaret and Lord Snowden at the Commonwealth Institute, London. Famed fashion designer Pierre Cardin has died aged 98, France's Academy of Fine Arts said.
Fashion designer Pierre Cardin (r) with new fiancee Jeanne Moreau in the Aegean. They have recently been spotted cruising around the islands of the Aegean and are reported to be getting married.
Fashion designer Pierre Cardin is shown in New York, Feb. 26, 1979. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)
Fashion designer Pierre Cardin stands by the wing of a plane, Nov. 1978. (AP Photo)
Paris fashion designer Pierre Cardin is shown, Jan. 17, 1967. (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin is pictured in his studio in Paris, France, January 14, 1967, during an interview by the Italian television. (AP Photo/Laurent)
French fashion mogul Pierre Cardin shows off croissant from his newly opened bakery run by Maxim's of Peking, May 22, 1985, a two-year-old Cardin-Chinese joint venture. Cardin is visiting Peking to show off his collection. (AP Photo/Rick Gladstone)
Brooke Shields and Pierre Cardin 1985 Photo By Adam Scull/PHOTOlink/MediaPunch /IPX
French dress-designer Pierre Cardin, left, presents the Seventh Gold Thimble to Norwegian designer Per Spoock, a prize of the French haute couture, in Paris, July 26, 1979. (AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)
Pierre Cardin, famed designer, holds press conference on his return to the Peoples Republic of China, March 19, 1979 to discuss his designs and business ventures. He also sits a layered wool fabric chair in freeform. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)
French fashion designer Pierre Cardin and escort arrive at the Cannes Festival Palace to see Coppola's "Apocalyplse Now," in Cannes, May 19, 1979. (AP Photo/Jean-Jacques Levy)
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Cardin had been elected chairman of the Academy of Fine Arts' Pierre Dux section in 1992.

He was born Pietro Constante Cardin to a wealthy family in Italy in 1924 but they soon relocated to France to escape Benito Mussolini's fascist regime.

Cardin began his career at the age of 14, working as a clothier's apprentice, learning the basics of fashion design and construction.

In 1939, he left home to work for a tailor in Vichy, central France, where he began making suits for women.

He later moved to Paris and worked for the Paquin fashion house and Dior, designing the costumes for Jean Cocteau's 1946 film Beauty And The Beast.

He launched his own fashion label in 1950 and soon prompted headlines with his famous bubble dress in 1954.

Pierre Cardin and models
Pierre Cardin and some of his models (PA)

This was shortly followed by ready-to-wear collections for both men and women.

His early collections were worn by stars including Rita Hayworth, Dame Elizabeth Taylor, Brigitte Bardot, Mia Farrow and Jacqueline Kennedy.

Those designs saw him develop a reputation for forward-thinking styles drawing on themes including space travel and technology.

Alongside fellow Frenchman Andre Courreges and Spanish designer Paco Rabanne, two other Paris-based designers known for their space-age styles, Cardin helped upset the dominant style of the day, which focused on flattering the female form.

Vogue magazine heralded his work during this period as a "revolution" in menswear.

Among his most memorable designs were an interpretation of a spacesuit commissioned by Nasa in 1969 and a collection of geometric dresses made from silver foil and vinyl.

The Beatles famously wore Cardin suits, without lapels and with buttons done up to the top, during a photoshoot marking their transition from an R&B act to experimental pop stars.

Beatles/Tussauds waxworks
The Beatles seated in front of their waxwork models wearing Pierre Cardin-designed suits, at Madame Tussauds in London (PA)

"Fashion is always ridiculous, seen from before or after. But in the moment, it's marvellous," Cardin said in a 1970 interview for French television.

He said going it alone "makes you see life in a much more real way and forces you to take decision and to be courageous.

"It's much more difficult to enter a dark woods alone than when you already know the way through."

Cardin licensed his name to be used on a range of affordable products, including perfume and ballpoint pens, paving the way for Bulgari hotels, Gucci sunglasses and Armani chocolates.

While extensive licensing ultimately eroded his brand's credibility, it brought in substantial revenue, allowing Cardin to invest in property, including the famous Parisian restaurant Maxim's, where he was a regular.

In his final years he no longer presented catwalk collections, but was known for taking young designers under his wing.

His work continued to be sported by supermodels including Naomi Campbell.

Cardin was inducted into the Fine Arts Academy in 1992.

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