Have an account?

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Christian Dior at the ROM

Enjoying the Haute Couture shows this week out of Paris? Well, I just returned from Toronto where I got to explore Christian Dior at the ROM. This fashion exhibit was on the smaller side at the Royal Ontario Museum.
The show was not a career-spanning, sprawling retrospective of the brand like you would expect to find at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This Christian Dior exhibit mainly focused on the era around the New Look's popularity. Think the 1940's and 1950's. The fit and flared silhouettes of this time period defined that generation. Many would even refer to that era and the clothing aesthetic as the "Dior New Look period."

What I really appreciated about this exhibit, was the tributes it paid to their artisans. Most people don't realize details like hand-beading, ribbon making, etc. are services that are often handled by outside contractors at the Haute Couture level. Usually, those names are lost to history. This exhibit had cases of embroidered swatches from the top embroidery studios that the designer used. Studios like Maison Rebe, Maison Hurel and Gynisty & Quenolle.
The show also highlighted how Christian Dior purposely used ribbon as an elaborate design element as a way to preserve the ribbon industry itself.
If you cannot afford to fly to Paris and order Haute Couture creations every season, your local dressmaker can pay to use licensed editions of designer patterns and sketches to make a legal designer copy for your clients.
I liked seeing screen monitors that educated the viewer on the construction of the garments. Some looked deceptively simple until you saw the many, precisely drafted pattern pieces that made up the gown on the mannequin,
You got to see small glimpses of the design process. There were sketchbooks and hand cut fabric swatch catalogs on display. 
Brand-expanding licenses were covered. Everything from perfume, jewelry, and shoes were shown. I was a little disappointed that this exhibit did not have more personal anecdotes or items that would give you a sense of the man behind the label. However, the process of the label and everything that made up the dress in front of the label was covered. 
I also would have liked to see the work of other designers that have led or influenced the brand, rather than just a little bit of the work process for Christian Dior.

Now that you have seen a bit of elegance in Toronto, why don't you visit the exhibit sometime? The Christian Dio at the ROM show will be in Canada until March 18, 2018.
Photos by Mariana Leung

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Site Meter