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Thurs, May 10, 2012 – Sun, Aug 19, 2012
Tues – Thurs, Sun: 9:30 am – 5:30 pm
Fri, Sat: 9:30 am – 9 pm
Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.
Up next after a record-breaking exhibition on Alexander McQueen, The Costume Institute will unveil Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada: On Fashion, an exhibition that explores the striking affinities between these two Italian designers from different eras.
Inspired by Miguel Covarrubias’s “Impossible Interviews” for Vanity Fair in the 1930s, fictive conversations between these iconic women will suggest new readings of their most innovative work.
The title is based on Umberto Eco’s books On Beauty and On Ugliness, which explore the philosophy of aesthetics. Videos in the galleries of simulated conversations between Schiaparelli and Prada will follow the book’s outline and will be organized by topics such as “On Art,” “On Politics,” “On Women,” “On Creativity,” and more.
Approximately 80 designs—by Elsa Schiaparelli (1890–1973) from the late 1920s to the early 1950s, and by Miuccia Prada from the late 1980s to the present—will be displayed. Signature objects by both designers will be compared and contrasted to explore the impact of their aesthetics and sensibilities on contemporary notions of fashionability.
Schiaparelli, who worked in Paris from the 1920s until her house closed in 1954, was closely associated with the Surrealist movement and created such iconic pieces as the tear dress, the shoe hat and the insect necklace. Prada, who holds a PhD in political science, took over her family’s Milan-based business in 1978 and focuses on fashion that reflects the eclectic nature of Postmodernism.
Organized by curators Harold Koda and Andrew Bolton, the show will have film director Baz Luhrmann as a creative consultant, and film production designer Nathan Crowley as a production designer.
The exhibition will explore how both women employed unconventional textiles, colors and prints to play with conventional ideas of good and bad taste, and how they exploited whimsical fastenings, fanciful trompe l’oeil details and deliberately rudimentary embroideries for strange and provocative outcomes designerfashionconsignments.com. Experimental technologies and modes of presentation will bring together masterworks from the designers in an unexpected series of conversations on the relationship between fashion and culture.
- Directions: Subway: 4, 5, 6 to 86th Street