NGV Melbourne’s Haute Couture Collection includes Dior, Yves Saint Laurent and Balenciaga

NGV opens Victoria’s own walk-in wardrobe of Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga and more
Open until14 July 2019 | NGV International | FREE entry

Featuring a rare suite of Gabrielle Chanel’s little black dresses, the deftly draped haute couture gowns of Madame Grès and Yves Saint Laurent’s ground-breaking women’s tuxedo Le Smoking, suit from 1967, The Krystyna Campbell-Pretty Fashion Gift showcases more than 150 garments from Parisien haute couture and international fashion houses that have been generously gifted to the NGV by leading philanthropist Krystyna Campbell-Pretty.

From a rendition of Alexander McQueen’s iconoclastic tartan gown famously worn by Sarah Jessica Parker to New York’s Met Gala in 2006, to a dress from Dior’s debut 1947 spring-summer collection, the exhibition traces key moments in fashion history and illuminates some of the most ground-breaking designs from the nineteenth century to today – most of which have never before been exhibited in Australia.

The works have been generously purchased by Krystyna Campbell-Pretty for the NGV Collection in memory of her late husband, Harold Campbell-Pretty. Since 2015, Krystyna has gifted more than 250 garments, working closely with the NGV to strengthen its holdings in key areas.

Offering visitors a fascinating insight into the minds of history’s greatest fashion designers, the exhibition also includes original sketches and workbooks by designers including Jeanne Lanvin and Madame Grès, embroidered samples from Lesage, fashion photography from Paris fashion houses such as Givenchy, and rare early fashion magazines, including Vogue, Les modes and Gazette du bon ton. These materials form the basis of a new specialist fashion research library created for the NGV: the Krystyna Campbell-Pretty Fashion Research Collection.

The Krystyna Campbell-Pretty Fashion Gift will be on display until 14th July 2019 at NGV International, 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne, Australia. Entry is FREE.

Imagery supplied by Tom Jones NGV

Written by Todd Anthony

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