French couture designer Yves Saint Laurent,
considered one of the most important figures in fashion history, died Sunday in
Paris, friend and partner Pierre Berge said.
Saint Laurent was born on August 1, 1936, in the port city of Oran, Algeria. In the 1960s he became famous for his women's tuxedo. In 2002, Saint Laurent withdrew from the public eye, and his brand now belongs to the French luxury company PPR.
On the company web site, Yves Saint Laurent is described as "one of the 20th century's most innovative and provocative designers. He created signature looks and styles and left a legacy of timeless iconic products such as the tuxedo, the pantsuit, the safari jacket and the trench coat."
Yves Saint Laurent is recognized as the first designer in 1966 to launch the modern concept of luxury women's ready-to-wear garments, in a collection called Rive Gauche, which represented the first step in making luxury labels accessible to a wider market, dpa reported.