4 April 1944|
|Died||16 April 2011
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
|Residence||Beverly Hills, California|
|Known for||Designing men's clothing, men's and women's fragrances|
|Spouse(s)||Tracy Murdock (div.)|
|Awards||FiFi Most Successful Men's Fragrance 1988
FiFi Best Women's Fragrance Package 1988
FiFi Men's Fragrance Star of the Year Specialty/ Department Stores 1997
FiFi Best National Advertising Campaign – Men's 1997
1995 Ig Nobel Chemistry Prize
2010 Otis College of Art and Design Otis Design Legend Award
2011 Oxford University "Entrepreneur of the Year"
Bijan Pakzad (/ /; Persian: بیژن پاکزاد, Persian pronunciation: [biːʒæn pɑːkzɑːd]), generally known simply as Bijan (4 April 1940 or 1944 – 16 April 2011), was an Iranian designer of menswear and fragrances.
Born in Tehran, Iran, Bijan migrated to Los Angeles in 1973. His exclusive boutique on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills was established in 1976. It has been described as "the most expensive store in the world".
Bijan's main residence was in Beverly Hills, California, but he was also known to own residences in New York and Malibu, as well as Milan and Florence, Italy. Up until the time of his death, Bijan was one of few Iranians in the media limelight who were still permitted to enter Iran.
Bijan was also known for his automobiles. Most notable in his car collection was a yellow Bentley Azure with black interior, as well as a Black Bentley Azure with yellow interior. He was also known to have a black Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren with a customized paint scheme, a yellow Ferrari 430 Spider, a yellow Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupé, and a Bugatti Veyron, all of which he parked outside of his Rodeo Drive boutique.
In the late 1980s Bijan designed a golden Colt revolver. The gun had a mother of pearl handgrip fashioned for a Colt Detective Special in the caliber .38 special. Inlaid in the cylinder was 56 grams of 24-karat gold. The gun was placed in a mink pouch in a Baccarat crystal case embossed with the customer's name. Bijan's own signature is engraved in gold on the frame of the gun. Only 200 such guns were made. In 2005, one of these guns sold to Jacob Nahamia at Christie's auction house for over $50,000 USD.
In 2000 Bijan courted controversy when an advertisement featuring a "rotund [nude] model named Bella" and himself was at first rejected by many New York magazines before it was accepted by Tina Brown's Talk magazine.
On April 14, 2011, Bijan suffered a stroke and was rushed to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. He had brain surgery but never recovered and died two days later on April 16, 2011 at 8:05 am. He was 67 years old.
Bijan's career began in Iran with the Pink Panther Boutique in Tehran. He dressed some of the world's most influential men: President of the United States Barack Obama, former Presidents of the United States Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush, Mike Darden, former Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mexican singer Alejandro Fernández, American actor Tom Cruise, German TV host Thomas Gottschalk, British actor Sir Anthony Hopkins, President of Russia Vladimir Putin, U.S. Senator John Kerry, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Tony Blair, Michael Jordan, Paul Allen, Jay Leno, Giorgio Armani, Usher, the richest person alive Carlos Slim Helu, President of Mexico Enrique Peña Nieto, casino owner Steve Wynn, designer Oscar de la Renta, Tom Ford, Shahram Nazeri, Viguen, former Beverly Hills Mayor Jimmy Delshad, footballer Saba Shakeri, and Lerad Dumani.
Bijan's fragrances for both men and women are known for their distinctive circular glass flacon with an open center and a dividing web. When half full, the fragrance fills two separate chambers, seemingly defying the law of gravity that liquid seeks its own level. One of these perfume bottles is featured in the permanent exhibit of the Smithsonian Institution.
Bijan is survived by his three children: Daniela, Alexandra, Nicolas and a grandson, Anthony. His first-born, Daniela Pakzad, worked closely with her father on many of his award-winning designs throughout his career. Alexandra, a former fashion model, and graduate of the London School of Economics and UCLA School of Law, works as an attorney. Nicolas works for Bijan Designer for Men and attends Pepperdine University. Anthony attends the Boston University School of Management.
- "Bijan Pakzad Obituary: The Obituary and Death Notice of Bijan Pakzad". Legacy.com. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
The Times says family members put his age at 67 but public records list it as 71.
- GHASEMILEE, SARA (19 April 2011). "'Most expensive' designer dies". Al Arabiya. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- Wilson, Eric (April 18, 2011). "Bijan Pakzad, Designer of High Fashion, Dies at 71". The New York Times. p. B19. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- Parisa Michelle, "Bijan Pakzad Dead at 67", CelebMagnet, April 16, 2011
- Wright, Richard (June 30, 2003). "Mercedes rides to rescue of Rodeo Drive Concours". The Detroit News. Archived from the original on July 4, 2003.
- Bella ads (contains nudity) Retrieved July 21, 2011
- Hamilton Spectator, "The skinny on Bijan's fat lady ads", by Barbara Thomas, February 17, 2000
- Reporter, Staff. "بیژن پاکزاد، طراح مشهور ایرانی درگذشت". Kalam TV. Kalam TV. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
- "Bijan — Luxist". Luxist.com. Retrieved 2013-11-22.
- "More is more". Los Angeles Times. 2003-01-05. Retrieved 2013-11-22.
- Other sources