YSL at the VMFA
I am so fortunately to live near one of the best museums in the country and I don't have to go to a big city to visit it. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts doesn't often rank in a top 25 list of best museums but it won't be long before it actually gets the recognition that I believe it deserves. It is often cited as the only museum on the East Coast to get a particular exhibit and that is the case for the current Yves Saint Laurent exhibit.
The VMFA does costume exhibits pretty regularly and I was excited to see this one. If you are interested in fashion in any way and you can get to Richmond VA this summer, this particular one is not to be missed.
One thing I loved about this exhibit is the amount of information presented on the designer, himself. This exhibit shows the value of nurturing talent early. YSL started his career at a young age making paper doll fashions from magazines and his own drawings. He was in his teens when he did these and his natural talent is clear.
This is part of a book illustration that he also did at a young age.
Another very cool part of the exhibit are these design boards. (I'm sure they call them something else). There are several of these for every collection showing a drawing of the garment, fabric swatches, notes and the garment number for the show.
They had 2 from every year that he presented collections. It was fun to walk them in chronological order to see how the color palettes and silhouettes changed. I also spent a lot of time looking at particular garments and then coming back to the boards to see how that garment fit into the collection for that year.
There is a section on how the garments come together including information on how prints are designed, selected and used.
Samples of lino blocks for printing fabrics.
Collections of hat forms that are art on their own.
A cool display on embroidery and showing how they used the toile and paper to show how a garment will be embellished.
And lots of very large jewelry!
There are 102 garments in the exhibit and I particularly loved this section with garments presented in color themes.
Each color section has a back display of swatch pages presented in a gradient.
He designed a number of dresses as homages to different artists or art movements. I think that Mondrian dress has to be one of his most famous.
The first time I looked at this one I didn't even catch that it was a body silhouette. I just thought the lines were cool.
If I could have 1 garment from the collection it would be this coat.
I wonder what Chris would say if I made us matching outfits in purple crushed velvet?
5/19/2017 01:58:34 pm
What a fabulous exhibit!. So many different things to look at. Yes, definitely you and Chris need matching purple crushed velvet outfits! LOL!! When will we see those?
5/19/2017 08:53:53 pm
LOL -- I think you should ask Chris before you spend much time sewing all that crushed velvet.
5/20/2017 08:59:28 am
Yes, I would pick that coat too, if I lived where it was cold! Thank you for sharing such an interesting museum exhibit. It makes me want to make it a destination trip!
5/20/2017 09:23:30 am
I made John purple brushed cotton one piece pajamas, complete with feet and a drop seat. He wore them and liked them. So, you never know.
5/20/2017 10:26:23 am
That was so fun....thanks for sharing. i, too, love that coat. not sure you will get away with crushed velvet outfits. haha
5/20/2017 10:54:35 am
Oooooh yummy, thanks for the glimpse.
5/20/2017 02:13:41 pm
Great show. I don't think Chris would be caught dead in that outfit even if it was in his team colors. I do like the womans version.
5/21/2017 10:31:51 am
Thank you thank you thank you for giving me a glimpse of this fabulous exhibit! Great photos, great observations! I probably won't make it to Richmond in the next 3-4 months before it leaves - I see it's a ticketed event but it doesn't look like it was too crowded for your visit.
5/21/2017 05:49:35 pm
Wow, Vicki, what a great post. Thanks so much for sharing. Isn't it wonderful to get at least a little bit into the head of another artist/designer and see some of their process? Fantastic!
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I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.