Halston's life and designs live on

August 07, 1991|By N.Y. Times News Service

NEW YORK -- Halston, a designer whose personal life attracted as much attention as his fashions, will be examined from both sides this fall. "Simply Halston," a biography by Steven Gaines, is scheduled for publication in September.

Advance copies of the book, which is an account of stormy business and personal relationships, drug use in the heyday of Studio 54 and a successful battle with cancer years before he contracted AIDS, have been sent out by the publisher, Putnam's. Halston died in March 1990.

In another view of Halston, as a designer rather than as celebrity, a retrospective show of his fashions titled "Halston: Absolute Modernism" opens on Oct. 29 at the Fashion Institute of Technology.

"Students and the public are really going to understand what an artist he was," said Chris Royer, the design director for Halston-licensed products at Revlon, which owns the Halston businesses. Ms. Royer, a former Halston model, is on a committee assembling the show.

"He was like a sculptor in fabric," Royer said. "I can tell you that, because he did most of the draping and cutting on me. I adored it."

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