The brand has been created by Austrian fashion designer Helmut Lang in 1986. His clothes were fairly successful in his native Austria, and, after presenting his work as part of an exhibition titled "l'Apocalypse Joyeuse" at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, initiated by the Austrian government, he branched out successfully to Paris in 1986 and created his label. At this time in the late 80s and early 90s, minimalist fashion was at its height. His clothes were made with very sharp lines and careful cuts, creating basic but extremely elegant silhouettes in high quality and often high-tech fabrics. His work has been compared to Rei Kawakubo and Yohji Yamamoto for his sometimes austere, intellectual designs.