Jacques de Bascher

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Jacques de Bascher
Jacques de Bascher

(1951-07-08)July 8, 1951
DiedSeptember 3, 1989(1989-09-03) (aged 38)
Other namesJako
Known forSocialite

Jacques de Bascher or Jacques "Bascher de Beaumarchais", born July 8, 1951 in Saigon (French Indochina) and died September 3, 1989 at Garches Hospital, was a Parisian dandy, member of the French Jet set and Karl Lagerfeld's companion from 1971 until his death, as well as Yves Saint Laurent's lover in 1973.[1]


Early years[edit]

Jacques de Bascher was the member of de Bascher family, the son of Antony de Bascher, governor of the province of Cholon in Vietnam and an executive of Shell's insurance department on his return to France in 1955. de Buscher's mother, née Armelle Petit, is descended from a line of landowners in Limousin. Jacques de Bascher has two brothers and two sisters. He spent his childhood in a bourgeois Catholic family, between an apartment in Neuilly-sur-Seine on boulevard Commandant-Charcot, which overlooks the Bois de Boulogne and the castle Berrière near Nantes. He studied at the small high school Pasteur, then high school Janson de Sailly, and finally high school Charlemagne. He seduced one of his high school teachers, realising his beauty and physical demeanor.[2]

At the age of twenty, he did military service in the French Navy. He started his service on the ship Orage, which was sailing to Martinique and Papeete. He became some sort of reporter, writing a ship's newsletter and airing music and interviews on the ship's radio. He was serving a month's imprisonment at the Arue camp in Tahiti for provocative behavior and misbehaving with his mates. After just nine months in the navy, he was sent back to France. During this service, he befriended a lot of people, including Philippe Heurtault, who became his photographer in later years.[3]

When he returned to Paris, he attended the Panthéon-Assas University for a few months and became a steward for Air France in 1972, but it was high society clubs that attracted him. According to Gilles Martin-Chauffier, for fifteen years, Jacques de Bascher "has evolved like a snake in the grass" between the gardens of the Tuileries, the five-stars, the Parisian backrooms, The Palace, the rue Sainte-Anne, (The Seven), The Blue Hand in Montreuil, the castle of his family and the big festivals of the fashion world.

Life with Lagerfeld[edit]

Jacques de Bascher first met Karl Lagerfeld at the Nuage at the age of twenty-one. A few months later, after Jacques de Bascher resigned from Air France, they went to live together until 1989. Lagerfeld claimed their relationship was platonic and non-physical. Lagerfeld told French journalist Marie Ottavi:[4]

I infinitely loved that boy but I had no physical contact with him...Of course, I was seduced by his physical charm...

Karl Lagerfeld appreciated Bascher's vast literary culture and impertinence, his aristocratic appearance and his manner of dressing. Kenzo Takada hired Jacques' brother Xavier de Bascher to be his general manager. They usually spend their time in gay nightclubs, like “Le 7”.[3]

In 1973, Yves Saint Laurent, at the time still companion of Pierre Bergé, fell in love with Jacques de Bascher. While Lagerfeld pretended he didn't notice, Yves Saint Laurent and Jacques de Bascher had an unbalanced and destructive relationship. Bergé threatened Bascher, who put an end to this affair.

During these years, Jacques de Bascher, who did not work and was maintained by Karl Lagerfeld fell into risky sexual practices, and eventually drugs and alcohol put him into a paranoid state. Sex was a huge part of de Bascher's life. He had relationships with both men and women. He was known for organizing of orgies and an infamous BDSM party, named “Black Moratorium”, which was funded by Lagerfeld.[5]

Last years and death[edit]

Jacques de Bascher discovered that he is HIV positive in 1984. At the end of his life, he cut himself off almost from everyone, unable to bear the physical decline. He died of AIDS at Raymond Poincaré University Hospital in 1989, watched over by Karl Lagerfeld, who had an extra bed installed at his bedside.[6] The following year Karl Lagerfeld bought a house near Hamburg, which he named Villa Jako in Jacques de Bascher's memory. In 1998, Lagerfeld launched a fragrance called Jako. The funeral mass Jacques took place in the family intimacy in the chapel of the Père-Lachaise cemetery, then a second mass is celebrated in the chapel of Mée-sur-Seine, where Karl Lagerfeld owned property, in the presence of Jacques de Bascher mother and friends, including his old ephemeral fiancée, Princess Diane de Beauvau-Craon.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Butler, Tijen. "Jacques de Bascher: Who was Karl Lagerfeld's former boyfriend and greatest love?". The Pink News. Retrieved 2019-02-28.
  2. ^ Thévenin, Patrick (2017-06-02). "The scandalous story of jacques de bascher, karl lagerfeld's former boyfriend". Vice Megazine. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  3. ^ a b "Jacques de Bascher, a truly naughty boy". parisdiarybylaure.com. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  4. ^ Ottavi, Marie (2017). Jacques de Bascher: Dandy de l'Ombre. Paris: Atlantica-Séguier. ISBN 9782840496472.
  5. ^ Cusumano, Katherine (2017-08-10). "Karl Lagerfeld Opens Up About Former Boyfriend Jacques de Bascher". W Magazine. Retrieved 2019-03-03.
  6. ^ Colyar, Brock (2019-02-20). "The Man Who Was in an 18-Year Relationship With Karl Lagerfeld". The Cut. Retrieved 2019-03-03.

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