Wednesday, 24 April 2013

About town ... Ballet & Fashion exhibition

A couple of weeks ago I popped into the city and visited the National Gallery of Victoria to see the Ballet & Fashion exhibit (as previously posted here).  The exhibit showed successful collaborations between designers and dance companies over the last 30 years.  From traditional tutus to contemporary dance costumes, designers embracing contrasting materials and working within their own aesthetics and challenged to bring unique style and grace to the stage in contemporary forms.

There were some gorgeous outfits on display, creative, fanciful, graceful with sketches and videos to compliment the collections.

I loved this video of the workroom at the Australian Ballet and the production of the Romeo & Juliet costumes - boiled sequins et al..

As with any textile display, for me, the garments aren't done any justice when they are placed behind glass panels as the lighting doesn't quiet capture the colour, workmanship or detail.  I would much prefer to have the outfits hung on a rail where I can run my fingers through the embellishment and take a closer look at the nimble work of artisans finishing garments designed by Giles Deacon, Akira Isogawa, Viktor & Rolf, Valentino and Collette Dinnigan - well wouldn't everyone I suppose!

Nevertheless there were a couple of standouts for me, - the costumes for Romeo & Juliet that Akira Isogawa designed, the tutu that Giles Deacon created for Natalie Portman in 'Black Swan' and the beautiful lacey tutu by Collette Dinigan that was designed for a project to unite the worlds of fashion and ballet in 2002 by the Australian Ballet.

The exhibition runs through to 19th May so if you're about, and fancy a close up of beautiful costumes, I do recommend a day at the Gallery...  (and besides the coffee downstairs is great!).

You can watch curator Richard Leong talk about putting the exhibit together here.

Amy Harris in Lady Capulet costume, photo Jo Duck

Christian Lacroix costume for Gaite Parisienne American Ballet 1988
Giles Deacon's outfit for Natalie Portman in 'Black Swan' - this was just gorgeous

Akira Isogawa outfits for Romeo & Juliet with beautiful embroidery details

The Akira outfits I think, were really current and quite wearable outside of the stage - what do you think?

I can't remember where this was from - but sure was stunning and sculptural!

Costume designs sketched by Yves St Laurent for
Les Forains a televised broadcast by Les Ballets de France, 1961 

A tutu designed by Collette Dinnigan for 'Tutu: Designing for Dance' project, 2003

A very wearable Akira Isogawa costume for Romeo & Juliet

I can see how some of these costumes are capable of crossing the divide into 'party wear' or 'evening wear' in my wardrobe... how about you?  (Well perhaps not the short tutu's.. unless I was channelling a Rosanna Arquette/Madonna/Cyndi Lauper early 80's vibe!)

Of course the day wouldn't be complete without a stop at the NGV bookshop and cafe downstairs... if only I could carry all these titles home with me!

The beautiful & hypnotizing glass water wall at the
entrance to the Gallery (looking out from within)

Next time: Dior & Yamamoto, The New Look

Images 1,2 via NGV
Images 3 to 8 me


C said...

I have a thing for shops at the museums ...I never leave a museum without at least a cuople of books!
Im sure there is some kind of conspiracy to make us shop...

Classiq said...

It looks like an interesting exhibition. I don't understand either why they would display the garments behind glass panels. It takes away from their beauty and magic.

Audrey said...

Beautiful Helen! and i love that last image too, it looks like a painting!xx

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