I have been determined to see the latest Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Exhibit, “Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversation” in person. Despite at least half a dozen work trips to New York between May, when the exhibit opened, and now, the LAST week of the exhibit, I just couldn’t seem to make it. Every time I tried to carve some time out of my “impossibly” busy client schedule or tack an extra day onto a trip, something would come up. Just as I was pondering making a special day trip this week, a client called last minute to ask for an emergency shopping trip on Madison Avenue, right around the corner from the Met.
end of my solo pre-shopping day to run through the exhibit. I knew better than to try to
see anything else at the museum, as painful as that was once I was already in
the building. I arrived at 5:10pm on Tuesday, only 10 minutes off schedule.
Here is a transcript of my conversation with the guard on duty near the
unmanned ticket booth.
affinities” between Elsa Schiaparelli (1890-1973) and Miuccia Prada (b. 1949), both Italian fashion
designers and revolutionaries of their time, was inspired by Miguel
Covarrubias’s “Impossible Interviews” for Vanity
Fair in the 1930s. In addition to the seven sections of the exhibit which
compare and contrast the designers’ clothing by common theme, there are 8 video shorts of
simulated conversations between Schiaparelli and Prada, as directed by Baz Luhrmann.
Judy Davis, the Australian actress who won a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Judy Garland, plays the role of Schiaparelli. The combination of the stunning displays of the designers’ artistry up close
and personal, along with the artfully crafted, intellectually intriguing video
element, is what put this exhibit over the top for me. Most of the Schiaparelli pieces are
from the late 30’s, when she collaborated with such art luminaries as Salvador
Dali, while most of the Prada pieces are from the 90’s on.
See Schiaparelli’s “shoe hat” and the lip theme on both the Schiaparelli jacket and Prada skirt. Read more about “lip fashion” in a previous blog post.
Hope you make it to the Met before August 19th! If not, you can always console yourself with the exhibition book.