Fashionistas will want to mark April 1 on their calendars.
That’s the last day to hit The Museum at FIT and catch all three of its current exhibitions – something WAG did on a recent afternoon that proved more than rewarding.
Here’s what’s on:
- A gem of a show in the museum’s smallest gallery, “Adrian: Hollywood and Beyond” offers a most glamorous step back in time. Gilbert Adrian (1903-1959) was perhaps best known as a costume designer, working on more than 250 films for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Here, though, we not only see some of his iconic work for the cinema but also his ready-to-wear designs. Through April 1.
- “Paris Refashioned, 1957-68,” which we advanced here back in February, “examines the combined influence of French haute couture, ready-to-wear, and popular culture, highlighting how changes that took place during this time period helped to shape the fashion industry as we know it today,” as its brochure explains. It was a delight wandering among creations from designers including Cristóbal Balenciaga, Chanel, André Courrèges, Nina Ricci and Yves Saint Laurent, among others. Through April 15.
- “Black Fashion Designers,” which continues through May 16, offers a glimpse into the work of several generations of African and African-American fashion designers, taking viewers from the 1950s through today. It’s a thoughtful exhibition, one in which the curators “acknowledge the problem of using race as a lens through which to view fashion design,” as the brochure explains. It goes on to state, “Yet because black designers have too often gone unrecognized and underrepresented, there is much to be learned from such an exhibition, about the challenges faced by black designers and how their experiences have changed over time.” The styles are varied, with work featured including a Stephen Burrows 1973 evening dress, a circa-1984 Willi Smith suit and a Pyer Moss ensemble from just last year that recall’s punk’s heyday.
With each of the shows taking viewers through a distinct aspect of fashion history, a combined visit proves quite the fashion exploration. Plan to spend some quality time in the galleries.
The Museum at FIT is on the campus of the Fashion Institute of Technology on Seventh Avenue at 27th Street in Manhattan.
For more, visit fitnyc.edu/museum.
— Mary Shustack