Wearable Art

Taking its rightful place alongside more traditional forms of art.

Alessandro Michele (Italian, b. 1972) for Gucci
Ensemble F/W 2016


Stephen Jones (British, b. 1957)
”Show” Hat, F/W 2013 ”Art School”
Perspex Plexiglas


Deborah Williams Remington (American, 1930-2010)
Dover, 1975
Oil on canvas


Stephen Jones (British, b. 1957)
”Sewing” Hat, S/S 2018
Printed cotton with satin cord and metal bodkin


Rei  Kawakubo (Japanese, b. 1942)
Comme des Garçons, S/S 2018


Rei  Kawakubo (Japanese, b. 1942)
Comme des Garçons, S/S 2018


Rei  Kawakubo (Japanese, b. 1942)
Comme des Garçons, S/S 2018


Rei  Kawakubo (Japanese, b. 1942)
Comme des Garçons, S/S 2018


Viola Frey (American, 1933-2004)
Nude Man, 1989
Glazed ceramic


John Galliano (British, b. 1960) for Maison Margiela
Ensemble Fall 2018


Kehinde Wiley (American, b. 1977)
Marechal Floriano  Peixoto (from The World Stage: Brazil Series), 2009
Oil on canvas


Phoenix Art Museum

January 30th, 2019

A Heavenly Garden

Of Earthly Delights

Dolce & Gabbana
”Penelope” wedding ensemble, S/S 2013


Valentino
Evening dress, S/S 2014


Undercover, Jun Takahashi
Ensembles, S/S 2015, printed with iconography from Hieronymus Bosch’s triptych ”The Garden of Earthly Delights”


House of Dior
Raf Simons, Evening dress, A/W 2015-16
A more abstracted interpretation of Hieronymus Bosch’s painting ”The Garden of Earthly Delights”


Valentino
Evening Dress, A/W 2015-16


Jean Paul Gaultier
‘Lumiere’, Evening ensemble, S/S 2007


Steinunn Thorarinsdottir
Armors, 2016-2018


Rick Owens
Ensemble, A/W 2015-16.
With a pee(p) hole at the crotch, Owens’ playful,  subversive ”habit” evokes the popular literary stereotype of the lecherous, debauched and scandalous medieval monk, satirized by Geoffrey Chaucer in ”The Canterbury Tales” (1387-1400).


The Cloisters, Fort Tryon Park

July 14th, 2018

Heavenly Bodies || The Cloisters

Well, I don’t know about the bodies but some of the gowns were heavenly, indeed! The exhibition was two-part, the main segment being at The Met on Fifth Avenue, and an annex displayed at the medieval monastic environment of The Cloisters, where the gowns seemed to have found their natural habitat, as if they had always belonged there. If I had to describe the display, setting & ambience in one word, that would have been ”sublime”.

Viktor & Rolf, ensemble, 2018 original design: A/W 1999-2000


Valentino, evening ensemble, A/W 2015-16


Philip Treacy, ”Madonna Rides Again II” hats, 1998 – 2001


House of Chanel, wedding dress, A/W 1990-91 by Karl Lagerfeld


The Unicorn in Captivity
Wool, silk and silver and gilded-silver wrapped thread
South Netherlandish, ca. 1495-1505


Altarpiece with the Virgin and Child and Saints
Master fo the Burg Weiler Altarpiece
German, Swabia, ca. 1470

Reliquary busts of female saints
South Netherlandish, Brabant, possibly Brussels, ca. 1520-20


Valentino, red silk velvet dress, S/S 2015


Thom Browne, wedding ensemble, S/S 2018


Olivier Theyskens, evening dress, S/S 1999


House of Dior ”Hyménée” wedding dress by Marc Bohan, 2018; original design: S/S 1961


House of Balenciaga, wedding dress, spring 1967

Fashion history has designated this garment by Cristobal Balenciaga the ”one-seam wedding dress.” If the dress were indeed made from a single length of fabric, it would claim a biblical source: Jesus’ seamless robe at the Crucifixion. The dress, however, is made of two pieces of fabric stitched together and it has three shaping seams – two at the shoulder and one down the centre of the back.


Grisaille Panels
French, probably Normandy, ca. 1270-80


Jean Paul Gaultier
”Regina Maris” evening ensemble, S/S 2007


House of Dior
Ensemble, S/S 2006 by John Galliano


Book of Hours
Simon Bening (1483/84 – 1561)
Tempera, gold and ink on parchment
South Netherlandish, Bruges, ca. 1530 – 1535

This tiny Book of Hours is one of Simon Bening’s prayerful jewels, intended for use at regular intervals throught the twenty-four-hour day (ideally every three hours). It was a reminder of the omnipresence of God, meant to be attached to its owner, or stored with precious possessions.


Jean-Charles de Castelbajac
Chasuble for Saint John Paul II (reigned 1978-2005), 1997

This chasuble was created for Saint John Paul II to wear on World Youth Day in 1997.


The Cloisters, Fort Tryon Park

July 14th, 2018

A Fashion’s Guide to Heraldry

How many hours did it take to create this modern coat of arms, would you say?

Gown:
Jean Paul Gaultier
”Ex-Voto” evening ensemble, S/S 2007
Grey silk mousseline, white silk-metal lace, crocheted gold and silver silk and iridescent crystals, appliqued holograms and aluminum ex-votos

Rosary:
Ivory, silver and partially gilded mounts
Carved in Germany, ca. 1500-1525

This rosary’s Latin inscriptions read ”Think on death” and ”This is what you will be.”

Reliquary arm of Saint Valentine:
Silver, gilded silver and blue cabochon
Made in Switzerland (Basel), ca. 1380-1400

Headdress:
Alexander McQueen – Shaun Leane, A/W 1998-99
Silver and faceted red crystals

Breastplate:
House of Givenchy
Alexander McQueen & Shaun Leane, S/S 2000
Silver-plated metal, resin and old gold

From the Heavenly Bodies exhibiton, held @The Met in 2018

July 14th, 2018

Ascetic Opulence

From over the top opulence to extreme modesty and back. Fashion is inextricably connected to human nature. To understand the former, you may want to start deciphering the latter first.

Spinario (Boy Pulling a Thorn from his Foot)
Bronzse, partially gilt hair and silvered eyes
Antico (Pier Jacopo Alari Bonacolsi)
probably modeled by 1496, cast. ca. 1501


Seated Paris
Bronze statuette, partially gilt and silvered
Antico (Pier Jacopo Alari-Bonacolsi)
Mantua, ca. 1500


Christian Lacroix
”Gold-Gotha” ensemble, A/W 1988/89


Gianni Versace
Evening top, A/W 1991-92


Gianni Versace
Evening top, A/W 1991-92


Gianni Versace
Jacket, A/W 1991-92


Jean Paul Gaultier
”Surprise de l’Icine” ensemble, A/W 1997-98


Dolce & Gabbana
”Idamante” ensemble, S/S 2016


Dolce & Gabbanna
”Angelica” ensemble, S/S 2016


From the Heavenly Bodies exhibiton, held @The Met in 2018

July 14th, 2018

Deep || Midnight || Blue

If I had to pick one from this plethora of extraordinary gowns, it would have to be this one; an eclectic combination of taffeta and lace, paired with leather biker trousers in Lee McQueen’s inimitable style.

House of Givenchy
Evening Ensemble, S/S 1999 by
Alexander McQueen (1969-2010)

Black silk taffeta, white duchesse satin, white cotton lace, white silk organza, black leather

From the Heavenly Bodies exhibiton, held @The Met in 2018

July 14th, 2018

Halocinations

The Angels wear tiaras.

Fragment of a floor mosaic with a personification of Ktisis [Greek for foundation (of a  city or colony)]
Marble and Glass
Byzantine, made 500-550


House of Lanvin (Jeanne Lanvin)
”Incertitude” evening dress, 1936


And a closer look at Goossens’ tiara and accessories over the statuary vestment for the Virgin of El Rocio, by Yves Saint Laurent.


From the Heavenly Bodies exhibiton, held @The Met in 2018

July 14th, 2018

Heavenly Bodies @ The Met

Heaven Avenue beckoned and we followed, taking a couple of breaks along the way.

First stop, The Met on Fifth Avenue where, for a short while, some truly divine gowns had descended to take their rightful places next to precious jewels, crosses, relics, mosaics and other objects of medieval art from the Museum’s permanent collection.

When fashion crosses that fine line between ”nothing is sacred” yet ”everything is”, in supreme style.

Dolce & Gabbana, A/W 2013-14


Thierry Mugler
”Madonna” evening ensemble, A/W 1984-85

This ensemble served as the finale to Thierry Mugler’s tenth anniversary collection, staged awt Le Zenith, an indoor arena in Paris. The model Pat Cleveland wore it as she was lowered from the ceiling of the auditorium on a cloud of dry ice, as if descending from heaven.


Alexander McQueen
Ensemble, S/S 1999
Birch plywood and ivory leather’ ivory wool twill and ivory silk lace


Riccardo Tisci
Statuary vestment for the Madonna Delle Grazie, 2015 (original design, 1950)


Yves Saint Laurent
Statuary Vestment for the Virgin of El Rocio, ca. 1985
Tiara and accessories by Goossens


Yves Saint Laurent
Wedding Ensemble, A/W 1977-78


Christian Lacroix
Wedding ensemble, A/W 2009-10


Jean Paul Gaultier
Ensemble S/S 1994


House of Dior by John Galliano
Evening ensemble, A/W 2000-2001


House of Dior by John Galliano
”Madonna” wedding ensemble, A/W 2005-6


The Metropolitan Museum of Art

July 14th, 2018