zondag 26 juni 2011

Madam Gres....Ultimate Perfection...

Last Thursday, my colleague Annemiek gave me the pictures she made at the wonderful exhibition in Musee Bourdelle from Madam Gres, we did see during the schooltrip to Paris in May. The exhibition was organized by Fashion Museum Galliera which is currently under construction.I was really looking forward to this exhibition, because you hardly see such an impressive exhibition with so many garments from Madam Gres all together.
To tell you the truth: I had never heard about the sculptor Bourdelle but after the guide who spoke about hislife and work , many of his sculptures can be seen in Paris. The museum itself is really worth a visit with.

Set close to La Tour Montparnasse the building in the courtyard is simply beautiful.
But... we came for the exhhibition of Madam Gres. Ofcourse I knew a little about her dresses: the drapery and the elegance of it. But I didn't know anything about her tragic life. In Wikipedia is written:
Germaine Émilie Krebs (1903–1993), known as Alix Barton and later as "Madame Grès", launched her design house under the name Grès in Paris in 1942. Formally trained as a sculptress, she produced haute couture designs for an array of fashionable women, including the Duchess of Windsor, Marlene Dietrich, Greta Garbo, Jacqueline Kennedy, and Dolores del Río. Her signature was cut-outs on gowns that made exposed skin part of the design, yet still had a classical, sophisticated feel. She was renowned for being the last of the haute couture houses to establish a ready-to-wear line, which she called a "prostitution".[1]
The name Grès was a partial anagram of her husband's first name and alias. He was Serge Czerefkov, a Russian painter, who left her soon after the house's creation.[1] Grès enjoyed years of critical successes but, after Grès herself sold the business in the 1980s, it faltered.
A tragic life. She was not a good business woman, but usually creative people are not good in business. Her couture house was sold without the rights of her perfume Cabochard launched in 1959 (the perfume is still available).

And at the end, in front of her eyes: everything was thrown into the binm. All her drawings, garments, patterns etc. That was the end of the couture house.
But let's go and see the exhibition. It all starts in the big room with sculptures from Bourdelle and in the middle of this room is a little cabinet with a stunning dress which is made out of 1 piece.
Mindblowing for me. Such a simplicity and elegance. Made out of white silk tricot.
Little perfect placed pleats, moulded into this sculptural dress. A Grecian Goddess.. As with all her dresses: you could wear them today and would look Fabulous in it.
The whole exhibition was a joy to watch and in the perfect setting. There were great gowns as this serie shows.
At the entrance of the former atelier from Bourdelle those dresses were shown.
A room further was this bright green dress showed with beautiful pleated details.
Some of the dresses reminded me of the dresses from Azzedine Alaia. The famous desingners who knew how to show the perfection of the woman's body into tricot. Not very strange to think it, because it seems that Alaia has a big collection of gowns from Madam Gres who admires for her cratmanship. A lot of his Gres collection was in the exhibition.
Madam Gres not only designed and made dresses she also joined forces with jewelery makers as can be seen in those 2 examples.

And on and on it went with the most amazing garments.
Based on a coat from a priest.
The shape of the New Look, but in a different way.
Bright and colourful.
And this one. One of the few dresses made in multicolours.

It was elegance after elegance, style after style and perfection after perfection....
At the end of a room was this display from white dresses with such beautiful details on it.

I guess not all woman can wear those dresses - you must have a perfect figure for it - but it must be very special to see a woman wearing such a dress at the red carpet.
Madam Gres was not good in drawing her deigns, but nevertheless she made little sketches which also have ended in the binn. Someone must have picked them out and a few months ago the skeches were presented to Musee Galliera. as with all musuems there was no money to buy them. Pierre Berge (the former partner from Yves Saint Laurent) stept in and bought all of them and donated them to Musee Galliera. A few examples were in the exhibition.

And there was more...much, much more...

Beautiful draped black dresses....

And those 2 with the colours of the 70's
But as mentioned before it came to a tragic end. This dress is the last one she made and after it was finished she gave it to the fashion designer Hubbert de Givenchy as a gift.
She never made anything more after that dress and died alone in a hospital.
Ofcourse after this Stunning exhibition I bought the catalogue.

Within also fashion photographes were you can see how wonderful the dresses look on woman.

Really worth to see, but you have to be quick......The exhibition ends the 24th of July..
For me it was one of the most beautiful fashion exhibition I have ever seen.
Next blog will be about the fashionshow from our college with great photoos made by my colleague Riky..

zondag 19 juni 2011

Lots of Fashion... but not much Knitting Nowadays..

Over the last few weeks it was almost all about Fashion. My students from the 4th year are finishing the school with their Final Collections. For me it is always a joy to see and hear them talk bout their own Collection. Those presentation days we had over the last weeks are almost the best days from the year for me. To see them grow within the 4 years study is a joy to watch and one of the great benefits of being a teacher. There is a Fashion show coming up on Tuesday so my work is very busy and hectic at the moment (so much comes inbwetween). Pictures from the fashionshow will appear hopefully in my next post but here are some details.. and yes..it is all about fabrics, details and creativity!!

It is always a lot of work for them to do, but this year the level is very high and the extern examinators were very impressed by the standard of it.
It is not only that we show the Final collections but also from other classes and levels. My 3th year class are also presenting their garments they designed over the last year. Some details are really worth to be seen...

It is Busy.... I came home on Fridayafternoon and had to sleep for 1,5 hour and went to bed at 21.30 which is not my ususal fridaynight. But I have to take good care of myself during those busy periods I know from experience over the last years.
This weekend was all about calming down..Doing the weekly things on saturday as shopping on the market, coffee in the cafe, easy dinner, a glass of whine and watching Wallander (2 episodes) on the tele. Today is about writing this blog and coffee in Almen (as ususal).Knitting is a bit slow at the moment. Only a few rows in the evening.. some evenings I was even too tired to pick up the needles. But the project I am working now is again an Estonian lace shawl from a pattern by Nancy Bush in great Knitpicks yarn I got from Wendel.
Had to start over a few times due to concentration problems...but I am sure the result will be fine.
Bram still is not feeling very well -very tired- but we are still trying to find a reason. Hopefully the coming holiday will do him well. Not always easy to deal with it for the both of us, but we are coping quite well I must say.
Off now to have some tea and later I will make a Summer Risotto with fresh peas in it...in my new Kitchen...
Picture is from last week when not everything was totally done..
I also did start another blog with the title Every Garment tells a Story. I hope to write once a week about 1 item from my wardrobe. Had this plan already for months, and being busy is not a good reason for not writing...