Kering To Provide 14 Weeks Of Paid Baby Leave To All Parents Of A New Child

Since January 2017, all employees at Kering and its Houses, irrespective of their personal circumstances or geographic location, have benefited from the Group’s first Parental Policy. This provided 14 weeks of maternity or adoption leave on full pay, while five days’ leave on full pay was provided for paternity and partner leave.

A global Luxury group, Kering manages the development of a series of renowned Houses in Fashion, Leather Goods, Jewelry and Watches: Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Brioni, Boucheron, Pomellato, DoDo, Qeelin, Ulysse Nardin, Girard-Perregaux, as well as Kering Eyewear.

Beginning January 1, 2020, Kering’s Parental Policy will provide a minimum of 14 weeks’ maternity, paternity, adoption or partner leave on full pay for all Group employees. The policy will be applicable during the six months following birth or adoption, irrespective of the employee’s personal circumstances or geographic location.

This pioneering measure is part of the Group’s commitment to equality in the workplace, well-being at work and work-life balance.

Today, Kering is strengthening its Parental Policy further by extending paternity and partner leave to provide 14 weeks, applicable from January 1st, 2020. From then, with Baby Leave, all parents, without exception and whatever their personal circumstances, will benefit from 14 weeks’ leave on full pay at the birth or adoption of one or more babies/children.

This new, practical step forward is designed to provide a better work-life balance and to promote equality among employees, female and male, irrespective of their personal circumstances. All the Group’s employees around the world are guaranteed the same benefits when a child or children become part of their family.

Key Figures

Women at Kering account for:

  • 63% of our employees
  • 51% of Group leadership roles
  • 31% of the Kering Executive Committee
  • 60% of the Board of Directors

Main commitments

  • In 2010, Kering launched a global internal program to advance gender equality within the Group.
  • Also in 2010, Kering was one of the first signatories of the Women’s Empowerment Principles charter established by UN Women and the United Nations Global Compact.
  • To achieve faster progress towards equality, Kering is now proud to support the UN’s Standards of Conduct for Business Tackling Discrimination against LGBTI people.
  • By 2025 Kering wants to reach gender balance and end the gender pay gap – at every level of our Group.
  • Beyond the Group, Kering supports women with two initiatives:
    • Since 2008, the Kering Foundation has worked to reduce violence against women. To maximize its impact and for more than 10 years now, the Foundation has been working hand in hand with a limited number of local partners in the three main regions where the Group operates: Northern America, Western Europe and Asia.
    • Women In Motion, a program created in 2015 to highlight the contribution of women to the film, photography and other cultural industries. For the past 5 years, Women In Motion has been a platform to change mindsets and to provide thought leadership on both the role and the recognition given to women in all areas of the arts.

Principal recognitions

  • 2016 and 2018: Kering received the Gender Equality International & European Standard (GEEIS) label in recognition of exemplary work toward gender equality carried out by our European corporate offices.
  • 2018:
    • Thomson Reuters ranked Kering 7th out of 7,000 global organizations on their Diversity & Inclusion index.
    • Kering was awarded the Most Female Board of Directors Award for the European Gender Diversity Index, published by European Women on Boards (EWoB) and Ethics & Boards.

At Kering, we are fully committed to diversity and equality for our people, and Baby Leave is a new and important step forward to levelling the playing field. With this policy, we are proud to support every new parent, whatever their personal circumstances, and wherever they live. By harmonizing these benefits for fathers and partners, not only are we giving everyone the same rights – with both parents now being entitled to the same parenting time at home – but we are also supporting women in their career – given that men and women are now equally likely to take extended leave. Our purpose is simple: to build a supportive and inclusive working environment for our employees around the globe. We want Kering to be an employer of choice,” declared Béatrice Lazat, Kering’s Chief People Officer.

In 2018, Kering had nearly 35,000 employees and revenue of €13.7 billion.

Saks Fifth Avenue Unveils New Beauty Floor In New York Flagship

The ‘future of beauty’ opens on second floor as part of Grand Renovation

Saks Fifth Avenue FaceGym

Saks Fifth Avenue FaceGym – SAKS FIFTH AVENUE UNVEILS NEW BEAUTY FLOOR IN NEW YORK FLAGSHIP (Courtesy of Justin Bridges for Saks Fifth Avenue) 

Saks Fifth Avenue today opens the new, 32,000-square-foot beauty space on the second floor of the New York City Flagship Store with more than 120 color cosmetics, skincare, fragrance, and wellness brands —58 of which are new to the floor. (See the full list below.) With a significant focus on experiences, the floor is approximately 40-percent larger and now includes 15 new spa rooms along with services such as medi-spa treatments, facials, massages, manicures, brow services, a flower shop and more. By moving the Beauty department to the second floor, Saks is evolving the way customers shop and experience beauty. (Saks New York is located at 611 Fifth Avenue at 50th Street, and is open Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)

Saks Fifth Avenue Apothecary

Saks Fifth Avenue Apothecary – SAKS FIFTH AVENUE UNVEILS NEW BEAUTY FLOOR IN NEW YORK FLAGSHIP (Courtesy of Justin Bridges for Saks Fifth Avenue)

The brands represented on the new beauty space include (in alphabetic order) Acqua Di Parma, AERIN Beauty, Aesop, Alexander McQueen, Amouage, Angela Caglia, Annick Goutal, Art Meets Art, Artis, Balenciaga, Blink Brow Bar London, Bobbi Brown, Bond No. 9, Bottega Veneta, Bulgari, Burberry, By Terry, Care/of, Cartier, Cellcosmet, Chanel, Chantecaille, Chloé, Christian Dior, Christian Louboutin, Christophe Robin, Chuda, Cire Trudon, Clarins, Clé de Peau Beauté, Clinique, Clive Christian, Creed, Decorté, Diana Vreeland, Dior, Diptyque, Dolce & Gabbana, D.S. & Durga, Dyson, EB Florals, Estée Lauder, Ex Nihilo, FaceGym, Floraïku, Foreo, Frédéric Malle, GHD, Giorgio Armani, Givenchy, Glow Recipe, Gucci, Guerlain, Hermès, Histoires De Parfums, Hotel Couture, House of Sillage, Jason Wu, Jo Malone London, Kiehl’s Since 1851, Kilian, L’Artisan Parfumeur, La Mer, La Prairie, Lancer Skincare, Lancôme, Laura Mercier, Le Labo, Leonor Greyl, MAC, Maison Francis Kurkdjian, Mancera, Marc Jacobs, Mario Badescu, Martine de Richeville, Marvis, Mason Pearson, Molton Brown, Montale, Moroccanoil, Mugler, Narciso Rodriguez, Nars, Natura Bissé, NEST Fragrances, Omorovicza, Ormonde Jayne, Orveda, Patchology, Penhaligon’s, Philip Kingsley, Prada, Proenza Schouler, R+Co, Raincry, ReFa, RéVive, Rodial, RODIN olio lusso, Roja Dove, Rossano Ferretti, Sakara Life, Salvatore Ferragamo, Serge Lutens, Shiseido, simplehuman, Sisley Paris, SK-II, SKINNEY MedSpa, Slip, sundays, Supergoop!, Tammy Fender, Tata Harper, The Perfumer’s Story, Tiffany & Co., Tom Ford, Trish McEvoy, Valentino, Valmont, Viktor & Rolf, Vilhelm Parfumerie and YSL.

“As part of Saks’ overall growth strategy, we continue to look for ways to innovate, create and disrupt. The bold decision to move Beauty to the second floor, from the traditional main floor model, allowed us to build a one-of-a-kind destination enabling Saks to create the epitome of an experiential beauty floor,” said Marc Metrick, president, Saks Fifth Avenue. “We continue to apply the principles of what we call The New Luxury to everything we do. What we’ve done with Beauty gives the customer a warmer environment, differentiated from what they can get anywhere else and creates a reason to come to Saks and experience our brand.

Saks Fifth Avenue EB Florals

Saks Fifth Avenue EB Florals — SAKS FIFTH AVENUE UNVEILS NEW BEAUTY FLOOR IN NEW YORK FLAGSHIP (Courtesy of Justin Bridges for Saks Fifth Avenue)

The new beauty floor is the latest step in the New York flagship’s Grand Renovation. Saks redefined the department store concept with the revolutionary migration of Beauty from the main floor to the second floor. The Saks Store Planning and Design team, in collaboration with Gensler, spearheaded the design focusing on opening up the space, creating broad sightlines across the floor and modernizing traditional finishes that complement the brand’s heritage. The team used custom agglomerate white stone flooring from Italy throughout and restored original windows facing Fifth Avenue, 49th Street, and 50th Street, allowing natural light to the floor and north and south facing views of the city. Continue reading

Estée Lauder Signs Karlie Kloss as Its Latest Global Spokesmodel and Brand Ambassador

Kloss to Debut in Fall Campaigns, Partner with Estée Lauder on Digital Beauty Content and Kode With Klossy

Estée Lauder announced that it has signed Karlie Kloss, model, entrepreneur, and philanthropist, as its newest Global Spokesmodel and Brand Ambassador. Karlie joins the current roster of Estée Lauder spokesmodels Carolyn Murphy, Fei Fei Sun, Gabriella Wilde, Hilary Rhoda, Joan Smalls, Kendall Jenner, Misty Copeland and Yang Mi.

Estee Lauder Karlie Kloss

Karlie Kloss Announced as Estée Lauder’s Newest Global Spokesmodel and Brand Ambassador

Kloss’s first campaigns will debut beginning in July 2018 across digital and social platforms, TV, in-store and print to support Estée Lauder’s iconic products including Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick, Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup and Revitalizing Supreme+ Global Anti-Aging Cell Power Creme. These campaigns were shot by Josh Olins in Los Angeles and Palm Springs.

Karlie is the modern-day Estée and we are thrilled to welcome her to the Estée Lauder brand,” said Stephane de La Faverie, Global Brand President, Estée Lauder. “Karlie has achieved tremendous success in her career through hard work, first taking the fashion world by storm, then becoming a media and television personality, and now empowering young women to become future leaders in tech. Her passion for beauty, unique voice and global social media presence will help us continue to inspire and connect with women around the world.

Kloss launched her YouTube channel, Klossy in 2015, which has garnered over 690,000 subscribers and over 33 million views. Through her combined content platforms, she has amassed over 16.8 million followers to date.

In addition, Kloss’s production company, Klossy productions, will also partner with Estée Lauder to create Karlie’s own beauty content to share with over 16 million followers across her social and digital platforms. Her first video was launched this week, featuring founder Estée Lauder’s great-granddaughter, actress Danielle Lauder. In a humorous, behind-the-scenes sketch, Ms. Lauder oversees Kloss during her first day working at Estée Lauder’s New York City headquarters. This is the first in a series of videos that will be produced by Kloss that will debut on her YouTube channel, Klossy, as well as on both Kloss’s and Estée Lauder’s digital and social channels.

Raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Kloss was discovered at a local charity fashion show in 2006. Her career quickly took off, walking for top designers including Christian Dior, Alexander McQueen, and Versace, among dozens of others, and starring in several major global campaigns including adidas, Calvin Klein, Carolina Herrera and Swarovski. She launched Kode With Klossy in 2015 to empower girls to learn to code and become leaders in tech. Kloss was recognized on the TIME 100 list for her philanthropic work as the founder of Kode With Klossy and was featured on the covers of Fast Company and Forbes for her work to scale the organization.

Karlie is perfect for Estée Lauder,” said Aerin Lauder, Style and Image Director, Estée Lauder. “As a successful model, entrepreneur and founder of Kode With Klossy, Karlie is both beautiful and accomplished. I am so excited she is joining the brand.

To leverage Karlie’s commitment to educating and building confidence in the next generation of young women, the beauty company will also support Kode With Klossy through coding camp scholarships and events. Kode With Klossy is a philanthropic initiative founded by Karlie in 2015 which hosts free, two-week coding summer camps for girls aged 13-18 and fosters a national community focused on furthering career opportunities for girls in tech.

It is a dream come true to join the Estée Lauder family,” said Kloss. “I am so inspired by the brand’s legacy and values —from the entrepreneurial spirit of Estée herself to the company’s unparalleled commitment to creating best in class products for women around the world. I could not be more proud and honored to be part of such an iconic brand.

Kloss recently forayed into media and television, hosting Freeform‘s six-part series ‘Movie Night With Karlie Kloss‘ and premiering as a correspondent in season one and two of the Netflix original series ‘Bill Nye Saves The World.’ Kloss also sits on the board of Oath serving as an advisor alongside Oath chair Serena Williams and other industry leaders.

“Fairy Tales” are in Fashion at The Museum at Fashion Institute of Technology (MFIT)

The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (MFIT) (Seventh Avenue at 27 Street, New York City 10001-5992) presents Fairy Tale Fashion (January 15 – April 16, 2016, Special Exhibitions Gallery) a unique and imaginative exhibition that examines fairy tales through the lens of high fashion. In versions of numerous fairy tales by authors such as Charles Perrault, the Brothers Grimm, and Hans Christian Andersen, it is evident that dress is often used to symbolize a character’s transformation, vanity, power, or privilege. The importance of Cinderella’s glass slippers is widely known, for example, yet these shoes represent only a fraction of the many references to clothing in fairy tales.

Kirsty Mitchell, The Storyteller, from the Wonderland series. Photograph © Kirsty Mitchell, www.kirstymitchellphotography.com

Kirsty Mitchell, The Storyteller, from the Wonderland series. Photograph © Kirsty Mitchell, www.kirstymitchellphotography.com 

Organized by associate curator Colleen Hill, Fairy Tale Fashion features more than 80 objects placed within dramatic, fantasy-like settings designed by architect Kim Ackert. Since fairy tales are not often set in a specific time period, Fairy Tale Fashion includes garments and accessories dating from the 18th century to the present. There is a particular emphasis on extraordinary 21st-century fashions by designers such as Thom Browne, Dolce and Gabbana, Tom Ford, Giles, Mary Katrantzou, Marchesa, Alexander McQueen, Rick Owens, Prada, Rodarte, and Walter Van Beirendonck, among others.

The exhibition’s introductory space features artwork that has played a role in shaping perceptions of a “fairy tale” aesthetic. These include illustrations by renowned early 20th-century artists such as Edmund Dulac, Arthur Rackham, and A.H. Watson. Several recent, large-scale photographs from Kirsty Mitchell’s award-winning Wonderland series are also on display. This is the first time that Mitchell’s marvelous work—for which she designs and makes all of the elaborate costumes and sets—has been shown in the United States. Connections between fashion and storytelling are further emphasized by a small selection of clothing and accessories, including a clutch bag by Charlotte Olympia that resembles a leather-bound storybook.

Cape, late 18th century, England or USA. The Museum at FIT, 2002.36.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Little Red Riding Hood”)

Cape, late 18th century, England or USA. The Museum at FIT, 2002.36.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Little Red Riding Hood”)

Comme des Garçons, ensemble, spring 2015, Japan. The Museum at FIT, 2015.8.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Little Red Riding Hood”)

Comme des Garçons, ensemble, spring 2015, Japan. The Museum at FIT, 2015.8.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Little Red Riding Hood”)

The main gallery space uses fashion to illustrate 15 classic fairy tales, arranged within four archetypal settings. Visitors first walk into the Forest, which includes the tales “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Snow White,” “The Fairies,” “Rapunzel,” and “Snow White and Rose Red.” Several variations of Little Red Riding Hood’s red cloak are shown, beginning with a fashionable woolen cloak from the late 18th century—the style that is used to illustrate innumerable versions of the story—and concluding with a fall 2014 Comme des Garçons ensemble with an enormous, peaked hood in scarlet patent leather. Inspired by the fairy tale–themed fall 2014 presentation by Alice + Olivia designer Stacey Bendet, Snow White is portrayed wearing a black organza gown encrusted with rhinestones while lying in her glass coffin. The subsection on “Rapunzel” includes a stunning dress from Alexander McQueen’s fall 2007 collection, made from deep emerald velvet embellished with copper-colored beads that create a motif of cascading hair.

Adrian, dress, circa 1942, USA. The Museum at FIT, 71.248, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating The Wizard of Oz)

Adrian, dress, circa 1942, USA. The Museum at FIT, 71.248, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating The Wizard of Oz)

Mary Liotta, evening dress, circa 1930, USA. The Museum at FIT, 78.237.10, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Furrypelts”)

Mary Liotta, evening dress, circa 1930, USA. The Museum at FIT, 78.237.10, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Furrypelts”)

The center of the gallery is dominated by a large Castle, in and around which the tales “Cinderella,” “Furrypelts,” “The Snow Queen,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “Sleeping Beauty” are displayed. Cinderella is first shown in her rags, exemplified by a Giorgio di Sant’Angelo ensemble with a skirt made from shredded chiffon, and dating from his 1971 The Summer of Jane and Cinderella collection.

Alexander McQueen, dress, fall 2007, England. The Museum at FIT, 2013.2.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Rapunzel”)

Alexander McQueen, dress, fall 2007, England. The Museum at FIT, 2013.2.1, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “Rapunzel”)

Cinderella’s spectacular glass slippers are exemplified by a pair of 2014 heel-less shoes by Noritaka Tatehana, 3D-printed in clear acrylic and faceted to reflect light. Clothing is central to a lesser-known Brothers Grimm tale titled “Furrypelts,” which calls for a cloak of many furs, in addition to magnificent dresses that look like the sun, the moon, and the stars. The latter is represented by a dazzling, early 1930s evening gown by Mary Liotta, covered in silver stars crafted from beads and sequins. In “The Snow Queen,” the beautiful villainess wears a coat and cap of pristine white fur, exemplified in Fairy Tale Fashion by an opulent hooded fur cape by J. Mendel from 2011.

J. Mendel, ensemble, 2011 (cape) and spring 2008 (dress). Lent by J. Mendel, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “The Snow Queen”)

J. Mendel, ensemble, 2011 (cape) and spring 2008 (dress). Lent by J. Mendel, photograph © The Museum at FIT (illustrating “The Snow Queen”)

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Spring/Summer 2015 Fashion Week Preview: The Swarovski Group Unveils The 2016 Finalists for The Prestigious Swarovski Collective Program

Just ahead of the New York Fashion Week-Spring/Summer 2016 Shows (which starts this Thursday) and the hard long slough that is the international Fashion Month (New York, London, Milan and Paris Fashion Weeks in quick, overlapping succession), Swarovski has announced the 15 designers who will form the year-long Swarovski Collective 2016. This group of exceptional design talents, which includes both new and established (and returning) names, will work in creative partnership with Swarovski for their Spring/Summer 2016 and Autumn 2016/Winter 2017 collections.

Founded in 1999 following Nadja Swarovski‘s collaboration with a young Alexander McQueen and Isabella Blow, the Swarovski Collective encourages emerging and established designers to explore the creative boundaries of crystal use and craftsmanship.

Over the past 16 years, the Swarovski Collective has supported over 150 designers. Previous participants include Alexander McQueen, (Joseph) Altuzarra, Proenza Schouler, Jason Wu, Wes Gordon, Rodarte, Alexander Wang, Hussein Chalayan, Viktor&Rolf, Christopher Kane, Erdem, Giles, Mary Katrantzou and Anthony Vaccarello.
The latest edition of the coveted Swarovski Collective program will span New York, London and Paris fashion weeks, offering the designers year-long financial and crystal product support, plus the chance to win the annual EUR25,000 Swarovski Collective Prize, the winner of which will be announced in May 2016.

Swarovski Collective-Tanya Taylor: Swarovski announces the 15 designers who form the year-long Swarovski Collective 2016 and will receive financial and crystal product support.  Tanya Taylor, a new partner to Swarovski, will show her collection during New York Fashion Week, including this look featuring Swarovski crystal.  Tanya Taylor's SS16 collection was inspired by a photograph she took in Kenya.  She was moved by the vibrant pigments, rich textures, and ornate architectural motifs which will be translated in Swarovski crystals among other methods. (PRNewsFoto/Swarovski North America)

Swarovski Collective-Tanya Taylor: Swarovski announces the 15 designers who form the year-long Swarovski Collective 2016 and will receive financial and crystal product support. Tanya Taylor, a new partner to Swarovski, will show her collection during New York Fashion Week, including this look featuring Swarovski crystal. Tanya Taylor’s SS16 collection was inspired by a photograph she took in Kenya. She was moved by the vibrant pigments, rich textures, and ornate architectural motifs which will be translated in Swarovski crystals among other methods. (PRNewsFoto/Swarovski North America)

The Swarovski Collective members for Spring/Summer 2016 and Autumn 2016/Winter 2017 are: Alexander Lewis, Christian Wijnants, Creatures of the Wind, David Koma, Emilia Wickstead, Esteban Cortazar, Haizhen Wang, Iris Van Herpen, Peter Pilotto, Rosie Assoulin, Tanya Taylor, Thomas Tait, Tim Coppens, Tome and Vivienne Huand will see debut collections for Rosie Assoulin, Thomas Tait, Tanya Taylor, Tome, Alexander Lewis, David Koma, Haizhen Wang and Vivienne Hu.

The Swarovski Collective designers will show their Spring/Summer 2016 collections during New York, London and Paris Fashion Weeks, which take place between September 10 and October 7, 2015. Swarovski will also support Collective members on promotional activities and creative projects throughout the year.


Nadja Swarovski, Member of the Swarovski Executive Board, commented: “It is a pleasure to build on the success of the Swarovski Collective with this new line-up of creatives, and our ongoing commitment to emerging talent with the Swarovski Collective Prize. This is an exceptional group of designers, and we look forward to seeing them innovate with crystal looks over the coming year.

Emilia Wickstead, a returning Collective designer commented: “It is such an honor to be a part of the Collective. Swarovski crystals add excitement and innovation while creating a point of difference.”

Rosie Assoulin commented: “We are so honored to be working with Swarovski and to have the opportunity to really dive into their treasure trove of materials and techniques, especially after the CFDAs.”

Thomas Tait, said: “I’m excited to be part of the Swarovski Collective and to be using crystals as a creative ingredient for the first time to add a new dimension to my collection.

Swarovski delivers a diverse portfolio of unmatched quality, craftsmanship, and creativity. Founded in 1895 in Austria, Swarovski designs, manufactures and markets high-quality crystals, genuine gemstones and created stones as well as finished products such as jewelry, accessories and lighting. Now celebrating its 120th anniversary and run by the fifth generation of family members, Swarovski Crystal Business has a global reach with approximately 2,560 stores in around 170 countries, more than 25,000 employees, and revenue of about 2.33 billion euros in 2014. Together with its sister companies Swarovski Optik (optical devices) and Tyrolit (abrasives), Swarovski Crystal Business forms the Swarovski Group. In 2014, the Group generated revenue of about 3.05 billion euros and employed more than 30,000 people. The Swarovski Foundation was set up in 2012 to honor the philanthropic spirit of founder Daniel Swarovski, with a mission is to support creativity and culture, promote wellbeing, and conserve natural resources.

Coming Soon to The Museum at FIT: Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch

Susanne Bartsch with Gage of the Boone, 2013. Photo © Wilsonmodels.

Susanne Bartsch with Gage of the Boone, 2013. Photo © Wilsonmodels.

Susanne wearing a dress by Rachel Auburn, Liberty Theatre in Times Square, 2014. Photo by Robin Souma.

Susanne wearing a dress by Rachel Auburn, Liberty Theatre in Times Square, 2014. Photo by Robin Souma.

The Museum at FIT presents Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch (Special Exhibitions Gallery, September 18 – December 5, 2015), featuring approximately 80 looks from the underground fashion impresario’s personal collection of clothing and accessories, including designs by Rachel Auburn, The Blonds, Leigh Bowery, John Galliano, Jean Paul Gaultier, Pam Hogg, Stephen Jones, Alexander McQueen, Thierry Mugler, Rick Owens, Vivienne Westwood, and Zaldy, thanks to the generosity of the Couture Council and MAC Cosmetics.

Susanne and François Sagat in Switzerland hosting an AIDS benefit. Dress by Mathu and Zaldy, 2011. © Patrick MettRaux and Lukas Beyeler.

Susanne and François Sagat in Switzerland hosting an AIDS benefit. Dress by Mathu and Zaldy, 2011. © Patrick MettRaux and Lukas Beyeler.

Born in Switzerland, Susanne Bartsch moved to London as a teenager, living there for a decade. “We called her the Swiss Miss,” say old friends from London, where Bartsch was a key figure among the New Romantics. Arriving in New York on Valentine’s Day 1981, Bartsch opened a boutique in Soho while still on a tourist visa. An enthusiastic proponent of 1980s English fashion, she was one of the first New York retailers to import Vivienne Westwood. She also organized fashion shows, such as New London in New York and London Goes to Tokyo, that showcased designers Leigh Bowery, Body Map, and Stephen Jones. But life in 1980s New York was not just a party; AIDS was devastating the community. As her friends began dying, Bartsch notes that she “survived this period by becoming a fundraiser.” In 1989, she organized the Love Ball, one of the first and most important AIDS benefits. Over the next few years, she raised a total of $2.5 million for AIDS research and advocacy.

The catwalk crew at Marquee, 2013. Photo by Jason Akira Somma.

The catwalk crew at Marquee, 2013. Photo by Jason Akira Somma.

Susanne Bartsch has also been the longtime reigning queen of New York City nightlife since the 1980s when she became renowned for creating spectacular parties where she and a diverse mix of individuals—uptown, downtown, gay, straight, multiracial—dressed up in their own versions of high fashion, street style, drag, and Mardi Gras extravaganza. Her first party took place in 1986 at a club near The Chelsea Hotel, where she has lived for many years. “It was about seeing and being seen,” says Bartsch.

Bartsch and her friends have long constituted a fashion underground of creative individuals who take dressing up to the level of performance art. “Style is about expressing yourself,adds Bartsch. “You can be whatever you want to be—a silver-screen star, a Marie Antoinette baroque creature, a Victorian punk. I love that about fashion and makeup.” A muse for fashion designers and makeup artists, Bartsch has also been a catalyst for the cross-fertilization of ideas between creative people in a range of fields. Today, she is increasingly creating events that explicitly link fashion and art.

Photo by Robin Souma

Photo by Robin Souma

Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch opens with a small introductory gallery of images and videos about Bartsch and her world. In the main exhibition gallery, the first section focuses on the 1980s English fashions that Bartsch introduced to New York displayed in a tableau evoking her surreally styled boutiques. The second and largest section features a variety of the creations that Bartsch and her friends have worn at her famous club nights at Savage, Copacabana, and Le Bains, with a special section devoted to the AIDS balls. The final section evokes her apartment at the Chelsea Hotel, the center of her creative world. Videos and projected photographs throughout the exhibition document Bartsch’s 30 years of sartorial self-expression and its influence on the global fashion scene.

Susanne at a Swiss dance event at the Tribeca Grand Hotel, January 2015. Photo by Robin Souma

Susanne at a Swiss dance event at the Tribeca Grand Hotel, January 2015. Photo by Robin Souma

Susanne Bartsch, 1990s. Photograph by Andrea Barbiroli.

Susanne Bartsch, 1990s. Photograph by Andrea Barbiroli.

The exhibition, curated by Valerie Steele and Susanne Bartsch and designed by Kim Ackert after a concept by Thierry Loriot, will be accompanied by a book by Steele and Melissa Marra. A two-day symposium will feature a range of designers, performers, and scholars speaking on fashion, creativity, nightlife, and performance art.

The Museum at FIT, which is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, is the only museum in New York City dedicated solely to the art of fashion. Best known for its innovative and award-winning exhibitions, the museum has a collection of more than 50,000 garments and accessories dating from the 18th century to the present. Like other fashion museums, such as the Musée de la Mode, the Mode Museum, and the Museo de la Moda, The Museum at FIT collects, conserves, documents, exhibits, and interprets fashion, with a mission is to advance knowledge of fashion through exhibitions, publications, and public programs.

The museum is part of the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), a State University of New York (SUNY) college of art, design, business, and technology that has been at the crossroads of commerce and creativity for 70 years. With programs that blend hands-on practice, a strong grounding in theory, and a broad-based liberal arts foundation, FIT offers career education in nearly 50 areas, and grants associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. FIT provides students with a complete college experience at an affordable cost, a vibrant campus life in New York City, and industry-relevant preparation for rewarding careers. Visit fitnyc.edu.

The Couture Council is a philanthropic membership group that helps support the exhibitions and programs of The Museum at FIT. The Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion is given to a selected designer at a benefit luncheon held every September.

China: Through the Looking Glass Exhibition Extended through September 7 at The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Gallery View Anna Wintour Costume Center, Imperial China Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Gallery View: Anna Wintour Costume Center, Imperial China
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Gallery View Chinese Galleries, Astor Forecourt, Anna May Wong Evening dress, John Galliano (British, born Gibraltar, 1960) for House of Dior (French, founded 1947), autumn/winter 1998–99 haute couture; Courtesy of Christian Dior Couture Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Gallery View:  Chinese Galleries, Astor Forecourt, Anna May Wong
Evening dress, John Galliano (British, born Gibraltar, 1960) for House of Dior
(French, founded 1947), autumn/winter 1998–99 haute couture; Courtesy of
Christian Dior Couture
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

China: Through the Looking Glass at The Metropolitan Museum of Art has been extended by three weeks through Labor Day, September 7. The exhibition, organized by The Costume Institute in collaboration with the Department of Asian Art, opened to the public on May 7, and has drawn more than 350,000 visitors in its first eight weeks.  To date, the exhibition’s attendance is pacing close to that of Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (2011), which was the most visited Costume Institute exhibition ever, as well as the Met’s eighth most popular.

Chinese Galleries, Astor Forecourt, Anna May Wong Ensemble, Paul Smith (British, born 1946), autumn/winter 2011-12; Courtesy of Paul Smith Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Astor Forecourt, Anna May Wong
Ensemble, Paul Smith (British, born 1946), autumn/winter 2011-12; Courtesy of
Paul Smith
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Export Silk Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Export Silk
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Chinoiserie Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Chinoiserie
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Chinoiserie Dress, 18th century; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Fédération de la Soirie, 1950 (50.168.2a,b) Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Douglas Dillon Galleries, Chinoiserie
Dress, 18th century; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Fédération de la
Soirie, 1950 (50.168.2a,b)
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Charlotte C. Weber Galleries, Ancient China Dress, House of Givenchy (French, founded 1952), autumn/winter 1997-98 haute couture; Courtesy of Givenchy Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Chinese Galleries, Charlotte C. Weber Galleries, Ancient China
Dress, House of Givenchy (French, founded 1952), autumn/winter 1997-98 haute
couture; Courtesy of Givenchy
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The exhibition, made possible by Yahoo, explores the impact of Chinese aesthetics on Western fashion and how China has fueled the fashionable imagination for centuries. High fashion is juxtaposed with Chinese costumes, paintings, porcelains, and other art, including films, to reveal enchanting reflections of Chinese imagery. The exhibition, which was originally set to close on August 16, is curated by Andrew Bolton. Wong Kar Wai is artistic director and Nathan Crowley served as production designer.

This is The Costume Institute’s first collaboration with another curatorial department since AngloMania: Tradition and Transgression in British Fashion in 2006, a partnership with the Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts. China: Through the Looking Glass features more than 140 examples of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to- wear alongside masterpieces of Chinese art. Filmic representations of China are incorporated throughout to reveal how our visions of China are shaped by narratives that draw upon popular culture, and to recognize the importance of cinema as a medium through which we understand the richness of Chinese history.

Jar with Dragon (Chinese), early 15th-century; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Robert E. Tod, 1937 (37.191.1) Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Plato

Jar with Dragon (Chinese), early 15th-century; The Metropolitan Museum of
Art, Gift of Robert E. Tod, 1937 (37.191.1)
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Plato

Festival robe worn by Emperor Qianlong, second half of 18th-century; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Purchase, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1935 (35.84.8) Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Festival robe worn by Emperor Qianlong, second half of 18th-century; The
Metropolitan Museum of Art, Purchase, Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1935 (35.84.8)
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Evening dress, Ralph Lauren (American, born 1939), autumn/winter 2011–12; Courtesy of Ralph Lauren Collection Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Evening dress, Ralph Lauren (American, born 1939), autumn/winter 2011–12;
Courtesy of Ralph Lauren Collection
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Evening dress, Jean Paul Gaultier (French, born 1952), autumn/winter 2001-2 haute couture; Courtesy of Jean Paul Gaultier Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Evening dress, Jean Paul Gaultier (French, born 1952), autumn/winter 2001-2
haute couture; Courtesy of Jean Paul Gaultier
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

13."Quiproquo" cocktail dress, Christian Dior (French, 1905–1957) for House of Dior (French, founded 1947), 1951; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Mrs. Byron C. Foy, 1953 (C.I.53.40.38a-d) Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon 14.Film Still from In the Mood for Love, 2000; Courtesy of Block 2 Pictures Inc. Photo: Courtesy

13.”Quiproquo” cocktail dress, Christian Dior (French, 1905–1957) for House of
Dior (French, founded 1947), 1951; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of
Mrs. Byron C. Foy, 1953 (C.I.53.40.38a-d)
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon
14.Film Still from In the Mood for Love, 2000; Courtesy of Block 2 Pictures Inc.
Photo: Courtesy

Dress, John Galliano (British, born Gibraltar, 1960) for House of Dior (French, founded 1947), spring/summer 2003 haute couture; Courtesy of Christian Dior Couture Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Dress, John Galliano (British, born Gibraltar, 1960) for House of Dior (French,
founded 1947), spring/summer 2003 haute couture; Courtesy of Christian Dior
Couture
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Encompassing approximately 30,000 square feet in 16 separate galleries in the Museum’s Chinese and Egyptian Galleries and Anna Wintour Costume Center, it is The Costume Institute’s largest special exhibition ever, and also one of the Museum’s largest. With gallery space three times the size of a typical Costume Institute major spring show, China has accommodated large numbers of visitors without lines.

Anna Wintour Costume Center, Imperial China Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Anna Wintour Costume Center, Imperial China
Photo: © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Evening dress, Tom Ford (American, born 1961) for Yves Saint Laurent, Paris (French, founded 1961), autumn/winter 2004–5; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of Yves Saint Laurent, 2005 (2005.325.1) Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

Evening dress, Tom Ford (American, born 1961) for Yves Saint Laurent, Paris
(French, founded 1961), autumn/winter 2004–5; The Metropolitan Museum
of Art, Gift of Yves Saint Laurent, 2005 (2005.325.1)
Photo: Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography © Platon

The Anna Wintour Costume Center’s Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch Gallery presents a series of “mirrored reflections” focusing on Imperial China; the Republic of China, especially Shanghai in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s; and the People’s Republic of China. These reflections, as well as others in the exhibition, are illustrated with scenes from films by such groundbreaking Chinese directors as Zhang Yimou, Chen Kaige, Ang Lee, and Wong Kar Wai. Distinct vignettes are devoted to “women of style,” including Hu Die (known as Butterfly Wu), Oei Huilan (the former Madame Wellington Koo), and Soong Mei-Ling (Madame Chiang Kai-shek).

Directly above the Anna Wintour Costume Center, the Chinese Galleries on the second floor showcase fashion from the 1700s to the present, juxtaposed with decorative arts from Imperial China, including jade, bronze, lacquer, and blue-and-white porcelain, mostly drawn from the Met’s collection. The Astor Court features a thematic vignette dedicated to Chinese opera, focusing on John Galliano’s Spring 2003 Christian Dior Haute Couture Collection.

Designers in the exhibition include Cristobal Balenciaga, Travis Banton, Bulgari, Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Callot Soeurs, Cartier, Roberto Cavalli, Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Tom Ford for Yves Saint Laurent, John Galliano for Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier, Valentino Garavani, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Picciolo for Valentino, Craig Green, Guo Pei, Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, Jeanne Lanvin, Ralph Lauren, Christian Louboutin, Martin Margiela, Alexander McQueen, Alexander McQueen for Givenchy, Edward Molyneux, Kate and Laura Mulleavy, Dries van Noten, Jean Patou, Paul Poiret, Yves Saint Laurent, Paul Smith, Van Cleef & Arpels, Vivienne Tam, Giambattista Valli, Vivienne Westwood, Jason Wu, and Laurence Xu.

This exhibition is one of the most ambitious ever mounted by the Met, and I want as many people as possible to be able see it,” said Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of the Met. “It is a show that represents an extraordinary collaboration across the Museum, resulting in a fantastic exploration of China’s impact on creativity over centuries.”

Museum Members will have early morning private access to the galleries from Wednesday, July 22, to Sunday, July 26, from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., before the Museum opens to the public.