Fashion designer Rahul Mishra was on Tuesday conferred with the insignia of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres at a function at the Residence of France in Delhi.
The French government's distinction l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) is bestowed upon "persons who have distinguished themselves by their creativity in the field of art, culture, and literature or for their contribution to the influence of arts in France and throughout the world".
Ambassador of France to India Emmanuel Lenain presented the medal to Mishra for his career and connection to France.
"We wish you the best. For all these reasons, the French government wanted to give this honour to you. You're not going to be alone. Many Indian artistes have received this. One of the last was Shah Rukh Khan. You're in good company," the ambassador said at the event.
Mishra, who shared the stage with his wife Divya, expressed his gratitude to the government of France for the honour.
"I'm deeply humbled to receive the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by French ambassador Emmanuel Lenain. He has been a great supporter and friend. Also thanks to French President Emmanuel Macron for his kind recognition," the Delhi-based designer, known for marrying slow fashion with traditional Indian crafts, said in his acceptance speech.
Mishra, who debuted with his prêt-à-porter (ready-to-wear) collection at Paris Fashion Week in 2014, said he accepted the honour on behalf of members of the craftspeople community.
"In truth, this has taken thousands of hands and their hearts and touched my journey as a designer and supported me. That is where I borrowed some fundamental philosophies of our brand..." he added.
Paris, the capital of France, has been inspirational for artistes around the world, including him, he said.
"Paris truly is a global place. Look at the openness of the French culture, how they welcome and recognise art early in the world," said the designer, who counts French painters Henri Rousseau and Claude Monet as a source of inspiration.
"France has become the second home for Divya and me... this also demonstrates a glorious display of flourishing Indo-French relationship and how compatible we are as cultures and people," he added.
Mishra is also the first Indian designer to win the International Woolmark Prize at the Milan Fashion Week (2014). In 2020, he was invited to showcase his designs as a guest designer at the Paris Haute Couture Week.