There has been contention for months now between Esteban Cortazar, the young creative director at Emauel Ungaro (he replaced Peter Dundas who is now the head designer at Emilio Pucci), and the house’s CEO, Mounir Moufarrige. Mainly the two have been butting heads over marketing and advertising strategies. For example, Moufarrige reportedly at one point wanted to enlist Lindsay Lohan to be the face of the brand, and possibly even have some creative input. It was then reported that Cortazar was suing Ungaro. Now WWD broke the news that on mutually agreed upon terms, the two parties will be parting ways.
The 25-year-old Columbian fashion designer (he was only 23 years old when he joined Ungaro), has been the creative director for the Paris-based French house since December 2007. Since then, his three collections, though always big ticket shows, have all received mixed reviews. A few attempts were made to make it look as if things had been patched up between the two men – Cortazar was spotted at Ungaro’s men show in Paris where he was seen greeting Moufarrige and when questioned about his status at the house, the young designer exclaimed: “For now I am here.” Cortazar also noted that he was hard at work on a pre-collection. As of yet, no possible successors have been named to the house which, since 2005, has been owned by high-tech entrepreneur Asim Abdullah.
Cortazar has been a player in the fashion game since he showed his first collection at the age of 18, and there is no doubt that the designer will continue to shine post-Ungaro.