###Media Contact: Elyse Topalian / Naomi Takafuchi Communications Department
Gala Benefit May 4, 2009, with Honorary Chair Marc Jacobs and Co-Chairs Kate Moss, Justin Timberlake, and Anna Wintour Exhibition dates: May 6-August 9, 2009 Exhibition location: The Tisch Galleries, second floor Press preview: Monday, May 4, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion, the spring 2009 exhibition organized by The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, will explore the reciprocal relationship between high fashion and evolving ideals of beauty, focusing on iconic fashion models in the latter half of the 20th century and their roles in projecting, and sometimes inspiring, the fashion of their respective eras. The exhibition will be on view at the Metropolitan from May 6 through August 9. The exhibition is made possible by Marc Jacobs. Additional support is provided by Condé Nast. "The exhibition will examine a timeline of fashion from 1947 to 1997 through the idealized aesthetic of the fashion model," said Harold Koda, Curator in Charge of The Costume Institute. "We will look at the power of clothing, fashion photography, and the model to project the look of an era. With a mere gesture, a truly stellar model can sum up the attitude of her time - becoming not only a muse to designers or photographers, but a muse to a generation." To celebrate the opening of the exhibition, the Museum's Costume Institute Gala Benefit will take place on Monday, May 4, 2009. Marc Jacobs will serve as Honorary Chair of the Gala. Co-Chairs are Kate Moss; Justin Timberlake; and Anna Wintour, Editor-in-Chief of Vogue. This fundraising event is The Costume Institute's main source of annual funding for exhibitions, acquisitions, and capital improvements. The exhibition will feature approximately 80 masterworks of haute couture and ready-to-wear. Fashion editorial, advertising, and runway photography plus large- scale projections from feature films will be used throughout the galleries to contextualize the fashion zeitgeist. Exhibition Overview The exhibition, in the Museum's second-floor Tisch Galleries, will explore how models transmit cultural change via photographs that document turning points in society and design. With the post-WWII resurgence of the American fashion and advertising industries, the launch of Dior's New Look and a proliferation of model agencies, an environment in which high-fashion models with celebrated personalities and distinctive identities emerged. Lisa Fonssagrives, Dovima, Suzy Parker, Sunny Harnett, and Dorian Leigh personified this Golden Age of Haute Couture. Photographers such as Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, and Cecil Beaton portrayed the new ideal of feminine artifice. Daywear from Christian Dior and eveningwear from Charles James will evoke the mood of the time, and in some cases, recreate scenes from important photographs. A large gallery inspired by William Klein's 1966 film Qui êtes-vous, Polly Maggoo? will evoke the Sixties "Youthquake" with Bernard and François Baschet's metallic dresses from the movie and ensembles from Paco Rabanne, André Courrèges, and Rudi Gernreich, designers who heralded the transformation from a sophisticated to a youthful ideal, moving from Jean Shrimpton to Peggy Moffitt, Veruschka, and Twiggy. The next gallery will focus on the 1970s, when athletic, All-American models such as Lisa Taylor and Jerry Hall enlivened the simple, unstructured goddess dresses of Halston, and an emerging group of more ethnic looking beauties like Mounia and Kirat presented the haute bohemian looks of Yves Saint Laurent. In the 1980s, supermodels expressed an idealized glamour, dissolving boundaries between runway, editorial, and advertising work. Naomi Campbell, Linda Evangelista, and Christy Turlington emerged as the "Trinity" appearing in global campaigns for brands seeking to bolster their design house identity. These models could morph into a different persona at each photo shoot, and still always manage to convey their priceless, individual distinction. By the 1990s, grunge and street style led to a radical shift from glamorous beauty to the rebel chic of Kate Moss, much as Twiggy supplanted Jean Shrimpton in the '60s. The exhibition's presentation of the minimalism of Donna Karan, Helmut Lang, and Prada that immediately followed will show how models of this era became an anonymous cadre of replicated perfection, allowing the clothing to supersede all. A coda to the exhibition will feature the Richard Prince and Marc Jacobs collaboration of masked, unidentifiable nurses (Stephanie Seymour and Natalia Vodianova) in Louis Vuitton. Designers in the exhibition will include Giorgio Armani, Cristóbal Balenciaga, Pierre Cardin, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, André Courrèges, Christian Dior, John Galliano for Christian Dior, Rudi Gernreich, Halston, Marc Jacobs for Perry Ellis, Charles James, Donna Karan, Calvin Klein, Helmut Lang, Ralph Lauren, Prada, Paco Rabanne, Yves Saint Laurent, Giorgio di Sant'Angelo, and Gianni Versace. Iconic models featured will include Nadja Auermann, Naomi Campbell, Janice Dickinson, Dovima, Linda Evangelista, Lisa Fonssagrives, Jerry Hall, Shalom Harlow, Sunny Harnett, Lauren Hutton, Iman, Dorian Leigh, Peggy Moffitt, Kate Moss, Suzy Parker, Jean Shrimpton, Christy Turlington, Twiggy, Amber Valletta, and Veruschka, among others. Photographers whose images captured the mood of fashion via their subjects, and whose work will be in the exhibition, include Richard Avedon, David Bailey, Cecil Beaton, William Claxton, Patrick Demarchelier, Arthur Elgort, Hiro, William Klein, Annie Leibovitz, Peter Lindbergh, Steven Meisel, Helmut Newton, Norman Parkinson, Irving Penn, Franco Rubartelli, Francesco Scavullo, Bert Stern, Juergen Teller, Deborah Turbeville, and Ellen von Unwerth. Credits and Related Programs The exhibition is organized by Harold Koda, Curator in Charge of The Costume Institute, and Kohle Yohannan, guest co-curator, and a cultural historian. John Myhre, an Academy Award-winning production designer and art director for films including Dreamgirls, Chicago, and Memoirs of a Geisha, serves as creative consultant. Faces, wigs, and headdresses will be designed and styled by Julien d'Ys. The design for the 2009 Costume Institute Gala Benefit will be created by John Myhre with Raul Avila. A book, The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion, written by Harold Koda and Kohle Yohannan, will accompany the exhibition. It will be published by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and distributed by Yale University Press - $50 for the hardcover, and at Met locations (including metmuseum.org) $35 for a paperback edition. The Museum's Web site (http://www.metmuseum.org/) will feature information and video on the exhibition.
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