The Met - Heavenly Bodies:
Fashion and the Catholic Imagination

11th  May 2018

We are delighted to be the sole supplier of mannequins for the Costume Institute’s Spring 2018 Exhibition: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination, at The Met Fifth Avenue.

 


 

We handmade 175 bespoke mannequins for the exhibition to the specifications of Andrew Bolton, Wendy Yu Curator, whose references were Michelangelo’s 15th-century Pietà, on permanent display in St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, and Prosper d’Épinay’s 1901 sculpture of Joan of Arc.

The bespoke figures have a white chalk finish that gives a sculpture-like appearance. “I wanted the face to look serene and contemplative,” Bolton explained, “hence the closed eyes and slightly downcast expression.”

Several powerful mannequins unite in the Medieval and Byzantine art wing, basking in the chapel-window-shaped light stream; drawing attention to their religion-influenced expressions and attire. High-fashion garments include a red silk taffeta dress by Pierpaolo Piccioli for Valentino, 2017-18 and an evening ensemble by John Galliano for House of Dior, 2000-2001, modelled on a the ‘Pope’ figure.

The most dramatic mannequins can be found at separate altar spaces within the complex. The characters wear ensembles by late Spanish designer Cristobal Balenciaga and Thom Browne whose pearl, crystal and white-mink dress forms a stark contrast to the mannequin whose pale face is drenched in bright red paint.

Show-stopping displays include a pair of mannequins on podiums in one of the courtyard spaces in a Romanesque chapel wearing Valentino outfits and an angelic, white-haired ‘Madonna’ wearing an evening ensemble, from 2000-1, for the House of Dior by John Galliano.

 

Tour the exhibition in the video below, provided by Vogue.

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