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As first reported in WWD last week, Dior Homme hired Van Assche, a Slimane alumnus, to take over the design reins for ready-to-wear and accessories. Although he started Monday, it was not clear yet when he will show his first collection for the French house.
In his statement, Slimane did not indicate his future intentions, but kept the door open to a reconciliation with Dior and the luxury group LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton.
"I want to thank [LVMH chairman and chief executive officer] Bernard Arnault, who trusted me with this project," Slimane wrote. "I hope he will understand my position and decision, if not now, then hopefully with some time."
Slimane also thanked his teams, manufacturing partners and retailers, ending his post with a long list of artists, musicians, photographers and filmmakers with whom he collaborated.
The designer gave special mention to his young models, many of them cast from the streets of London and Berlin. "They have been a strong inspiration — if not the only one — and the reason why I designed the clothes," he wrote. "I liked nothing more than seeing them take over the shows and making the clothes their own."