Thursday, August 16, 2012

Last Call: Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations

Prada skirt from Autumn/Winter 2007-8.

This Sunday, August 19, marks the final day of Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. I don’t think the Met has had the crowds this summer they had at last year’s amazing McQueen exhibition, so they are not extending the date on the Schiaparelli and Prada show, as they did last year with McQueen.

Detail of skirt of orange silk twill, black wool felt and feathers with orange plastic fringe.

Portrait of Miuccia Prada by Guido Harari, 1999.

Portrait of Elsa Schiaparelli by George Hoyningen-Huené, 1932.

Because of the reading I have been doing on Coco Chanel this summer, I know if she were alive it would please her to no end that an exhibition featuring Elsa Schiaparelli comes to a close on Chanel’s birthday, August 19. Gabrielle and Elsa really did not like each other’s sartorial style, and the press had fun stoking up their rivalry in the 1930s. Other designers weighed in on the two of them as well, and I recently read this gem from the young Balenciaga: “You see, Coco had very little taste, but it was good. Schiap, on the other hand, had lots of it, but it was bad.”

Ouch! (Though in Schiaparelli’s defense, I would not kick this cape out of my closet.)

Schiaparelli cape from Winter 1938-9 of black silk velvet embroidered with image of Apollo.

The image of Apollo is in metallic thread, sequins, beads and yellow rhinestones.

Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations runs through August 19, 2012.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street
New York NY 10028


The Silver Bunny said...

Never knew that Balenciaga, such a refined designer, also had such an acerbic wit ! (and there might be some truth in what he said, too !)

jill815 said...

Hi Silver Bunny! I was surprised to find that Balenciaga quote in the Chaney biography of Coco Chanel I am reading. I think there is some truth in what he said too. BTW, I'm still swooning from the pictures on your blog from your Norman vacation! XO, Jill

Lisa said...

Love the Elsa photo. I'm with you on the cape...I wouldn't kick it out of my closet.

Pam @ over50feeling40 said...

I am mesmerized by the Prada skirt...such fun and, you know, I love orange!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all the posts on this exhibition, dear Jill! What a shame that I can't see it this side of the ocean. So I rely on you and your excellent skills in keeping all the other interested people- such as me - informed and up to date on such lovely exhibits :-)

Anonymous said...

It's interesting to read about this rivalry.

Anonymous said...

Love the Balenciaga quote. Wasn't able to catch this exhibit - but heard it was disappointing compared to the McQueen!