The abrupt change of plans was announced during a lunch for press, faculty and other SCAD guests, held Saturday afternoon at college president Paula Wallace’s home.
Galliano, designer of the Christian Dior collection, was honored with the Andr¿ Leon Talley Lifetime Achievement Award and was thought to be en route with Talley when a representative called to say he was feeling under the weather.
"John became ill [Friday] night and was not able to travel to Savannah,” said Katherine Ross, senior vice president of communications for LVMH Mo¿t Hennessy Louis Vuitton, who accepted the award on his behalf.
Meanwhile, Talley was charged with the unpleasant task of announcing the guest of honor’s whereabouts – he remained in New York – to the students as they arrived at the show. And he knows how they’ll inevitably feel.
“I’m devastated that [Galliano’s] not here,” said Talley, who sits on SCAD’s board of trustees and has lured an impressive list of designers – Oscar de la Renta, Miuccia Prada, Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs among them – to accept the Lifetime Achievement Award at SCAD. “I previewed with John for the Dior cruise collection just a week ago Saturday. He was very proud of the award.”
For more, see Tuesday's issue of WWD.