The exhibit will unveil to the public on May 10, and will explore the similarities between two Italian designers from different eras, inspired by Miquel Covarrubias’ ‘Impossible Interviews’ written for Vanity Fair in the 1930s.
The extravangant Met Gala will be held on May 7. And the honorary chair is Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, with Prada fan Carey Mulligan, Miuccia Prada, and Anna Wintour serving as co-chairs. Director Baz Luhrmann will act as creative consultant to the exhibition.
The exhibit is interesting timing considering that Madonna’s film, W.E, about the life, loves and looks of the Duchess of York, Wallis Simpson is hitting theaters. In the film, costume designer Arianne Phillips, recreated some of Schiaparelli’s dresses worn by The Duchess or York, including the iconic scroll dress, a navy suit with white leather scrolls stitched on the lapel.
The title of the exhibit is based on Umberto Eco‘s books On Beauty and On Ugliness. Videos will play in the galleries of simulated conversations between Schiaparelli and Prada organized by topics such as “On Art,” “On Politics,” “On Women,” “On Creativity,” and more.
Around 80 designs by Schiaparelli — from the late 1920s to the early 1950s — will be displayed, along with Prada designs from the late 1980s to the present.
Schiaparelli, who worked in Paris from the 1920s until her house closed in 1954, was closely associated with the Surrealist movement that inspired her iconic designs such as the tear dress, the lobster dress, the shoe hat, and the insect necklace.
Prada, who holds a PhD in political science, took over her family’s Milan-based fashoin business in 1978 and focuses on fashions that reflect the eclectic nature of Postmodernism.
Both were thoughtful and creative women of their time and this promises to be a fascinating exhibit. Although it’s doubtful that this exhbit’s attendance will break the records set by Alexander McQueen‘s postumous exhibit last year.