All Images courtesy of The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, San Francisco) will present the world premiere retrospective of the late Oscar de la Renta’s work (March 12, 2016 – May 30, 2016, Herbst Exhibition Galleries) – the first major survey celebrating the life and career of one of fashion’s most influential designers. The exhibition is organized in close collaboration with the House of Oscar de la Renta and the designer’s family, and is curated by André Leon Talley, former American editor-at-large for Vogue and a lifelong friend of de la Renta.
“I am honored and excited to be the curator of the definitive Oscar de la Renta retrospective exhibition at the de Young museum,” said André Leon Talley. “This privilege is exceedingly important for me after years of close friendship with Oscar, as well as a strong working relationship during my life at Vogue. My goal is to highlight the extraordinary depth of Oscar’s creative aesthetic from his earliest designs for Jane Derby throughout the five decades of his remarkable career.”
Included are more than 130 ensembles produced over five decades. These garments are organized into several thematic sections: Early Work; Spanish, Eastern, Russian And Garden Influences; Daywear and Eveningwear; and Ball Gowns and Red Carpet Ensembles. The presentation traces the rise of de la Renta’s career in Spain, where he gained his first commissions; his formative years spent in the world’s most iconic fashion houses; and his eventual role as a designer for many of the most influential and celebrated personalities of the 20th and 21st centuries.
Ensembles in the exhibition will be drawn from the designer’s personal collection, the archives of the House of Balmain, public and private collections from around the world and the Fine Arts Museums’ costume collection. Viewers will see gowns worn by dignitaries and celebrities that include former First Lady Laura Bush, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Taylor Swift, Karlie Kloss, Nicki Minaj, Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, Rihanna and Amy Adams.
Oscar de la Renta (1932-2014) left his native Dominican Republic at the age of eighteen to study painting at the Academy of San Fernando in Madrid. While living in Spain, he became interested in the world of design and began sketching for leading Spanish fashion houses, which soon led to an apprenticeship with Spain’s most renowned couturier, Cristóbal Balenciaga. Later, he left Spain to join Antonio Castillo as a couture assistant at the House of Lanvin in Paris. In 1963, he came to New York to design the couture collection for Elizabeth Arden. In 1965, Oscar de la Renta founded his signature ready-to-wear label and is among the world’s most prestigious fashion brands. (For more information please visit www.oscardelarenta.com.)
“Both our company and our family are proud that the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco are organizing the first full-scale retrospective of Oscar’s work,” said Alex Bolen, CEO of Oscar de la Renta. “The Museums’ outstanding collections, augmented by open access to our archives, all viewed through the curatorial eye of Oscar’s dear friend André Leon Talley, will convey well the unique artistry that Oscar brought to the world of fashion.” Continue reading