Italian Fashion Glamour exhibition at the V&A

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The breath-taking exhibition; began 5th April and remains until 27th July 2014 at the spectacular Victoria and Albert Museum, London; the world’s leading museum of Art and Design with collections unrivaled in their scope and diversity.

Installation image of The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 – 2014 Photo © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Covering nearly 70 years of Italian Fashion and displaying some of the finest and most elegant work in fashion throughout the decades.

“The Glamour of Italian Fashion” showcases the fashions that turned the basic “Made In Italy” signature into an internationally recognized mark of style.

Bulgari; remains today as part of the LVMH GROUP, sponsors the spectacular exhibition. Bulgari was founded in Rome in 1884 as a single jewellery shop which progressively imposed itself with its never-ending, delicate displays of stunning jewellery and gem creations; defining the excellence and highest of Italian tastes. The International popularity and success of the company evolved into becoming the current dimension of a global and diversified pawn in the luxury market.

Fashion show at Sala Bianca, 1955, Archivio Giorgini, Photo by G.M. Fadigati, © Giorgini Archive, Florence

The first major exhibition of its kind, worldwide, is the headline exhibition currently at the Victoria and Albert Museum and brings together stunning fashion photography, archival material and previously unseen objects from private collections from the post-war couturiers of the ‘Sala Bianca’ to the out-standing success of its ready-to-wear brands.

The exhibition begins with the post war entrepreneurs whose stylish designs heralded a return to luxury.

The subsequent influx of American movie stars during the “Hollywood on the Tiber” period brought additional attention to Italian made fashions.

During the 1950s and 1960s; Hollywood stars descended on Rome and Cinecitta to enjoy the Sybantic life and the opportunities offered by the film studios; in particular; Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, who shot “Cleopatra” in Rome in 1962.

Elizabeth Taylor wears Bulgari jewellery at the masked ball, Hotel Ca’Rezzonico, Venice, 1967

Curator, Sonnet Stanfill, worked closely with Bulgari to select for the exhibition a few unique and extraordinary jewels; once owned by Elizabeth Taylor and now in the Bulgari Heritage collection to showcase the exhibition.

The jewels chosen from the 1960s, personify the exuberance and opulence of the “Hollywood on the Tiber” years and are rarely available for public viewing.

Sonnet Stanfill’s, the curator of 20th Century and contemporary fashion at the V and A, where she has worked since 1999; other exhibitions include: Co-Curating Ballgowns. British Glamour since 1950. She also curated the Ossie Clark display and New York Fashion Now, a display featuring the work of a new generation of New York based designers.

Evening dress of embroidered net and matelasse coat, 1966, Mila Schon. Courtesy Maison Mila Schon, Photo  Victoria and Albert Museum, Londo

Jean- Christophe Babin; CEO of Bulgari said:

“Through this partnership, we pay homage to the legacy of Italian Fashion visionaries and we participate in the celebration of Italian Style that the V and A has created for us all to share.”

Much of what has been chosen to be displayed has played a part in developing the fashion world, not only in terms of style and elegance but also in the preciseness of the couture features; embroidered coats, jewelled boots and detailed patterns on gowns; the exhibition takes a trip to the past from the post war era to the modern day; experimenting with what creations developed through time and the influences the Italians have in the lustful and luxurious garments we see on the catwalks today.

Installation image of The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945 – 2014, Photo © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

“The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945-2014”, sponsored by Bulgari runs until 27th July at the Victoria & Albert Museum.


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Written by Amy Evans

Graduated from University College Falmouth with a Bachelors Degree in Journalism. I have a large weakness for fashion and a love for designers as well as a strong passion for writing and blogging. With experience working at London Fashion Week, a fashion blog up and running and previous work published, I am prepared to take the Fashion Journalism world by storm!

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