Halston
Source: Netflix

Famed Fashion Designer Halston's Private Life Was Just as Interesting as His Public One

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May. 14 2021, Published 3:22 p.m. ET

Thanks to a new Netflix mini-series, the life of famed fashion designer Halston (born Roy Halston Frowick) is being immortalized for the small screen. Fans of the eponymous American label will be able to get a new and fresh look at his rollercoaster life, as well as a better understanding of the things that were most personal to him.

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Among those personal elements is Halston's on-and-off boyfriend and muse, Victor Hugo. So, who exactly was he, and what kind of impact did he have on the designer's life and work? Here's everything we know.

Halston
Source: Netflix
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Halston's boyfriend, Victor Hugo, actually worked with Andy Warhol on some of his famous art.

Victor, who was born in 1942, was a Venezuelan artist who emigrated to America to work as an artist and window dresser. He met Halston thanks to his connections in the fashion world, and the two quickly started a relationship. Victor was responsible for a lot of the window displays in Halston's Madison Avenue flagship store, and his prowess with design actually landed him a job with one of the most famous artists of the time, Andy Warhol.

The creative served as an assistant to Andy at The Factory, the famed artistic space that birthed many of the works that defined Warhol as an artist. While Victor was there, he worked on oxidation paintings and served as a model for the famed artist's torso series. In 1978, filmmaker Anton Perich made a short film of Victor destroying one of Andy's paintings, calling the act a "sacrifice." 

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Andy's influence ended up having a pretty profound effect on Victor going forward, with the time he spent at The Factory shifting his entire perception on window dressing. He is largely credited with being the first to incorporate pop art into window displays, an endearing element of his work that became a hallmark of Halston's store windows for years.

Halston
Source: Netflix
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What ended up happening to Victor? Details on his later life remain sparse.

The details surrounding Victor's later years in life remain largely unclear, but there are a few things that we know for sure. The artist passed away in 1993, although the cause of death was never officially confirmed. Halston and Victor separated sometime around the mid-1980s, and once their relationship fizzled out, Victor largely fell out of the public eye.

As for his former lover, Halston died in 1990 at the age of 57. The designer tested positive for HIV just two years earlier, at a time when the disease was severely affecting the nation. Victor's old boss, Andy, had passed away in 1987 at the age of 58.

For more details on the life and times of Halston, check out his namesake mini-series on Netflix

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