iTunes-7-Icon-big rss

Home » REVIEW » Currently Reading:

Review: Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House by Tory Turk

November 29, 2012 REVIEW No Comments

157210057PM00006 Valentino  Review:  Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House by Tory Turk

“Congratulations on your 30th anniversary. You have been an inspiration to me growing up and you still are. You are the great maestro.” (Note by Isabella Rossellini on display at Somerset House).

The charming Somerset House venue has been blessed with another show that will bowl you over, and I am not talking about the ice-skating rink. If you aren’t satisfied with the magical Tim Walker, an exhibition you can quite literally find yourself in (it’s free, so no need to do the unexciting ‘paying bit’), then surely Valentino will tantalise your fashion taste buds.  If visiting the work of either of these two very different modern masters leaves you feeling indifferent, then you can of course choose to get cold and injured on the ice…Somerset House is like a cultural theme park.

So if Tim Walker is the master of putting the eccentricity into fashion photography then Valentino is, as Somerset House have quite rightly put it, ‘The Master of Couture.’ In 1959 Valentino Garavani left Paris, and with all its grand influences engrained, opened a fashion house in Rome.  It is during this period that Valentino became known for his red dresses; a reputation that the exhibition does well at shaking-off.
The exhibition display doesn’t fit the 1992 W Magazine headline of ‘It’s all blazing sirens and flashing red lights’. However, one example of a ‘Valentino Red’ design on show is the red tulle evening dress from his Spring/Summer 1959 collection. This was worn by Jennifer Aniston at the 2004 UK  ‘Along Came Polly’ premiere.

157210057PM00014 Valentino  Review:  Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House by Tory Turk

Far left - Jackie O's 1968 'White Collection' Wedding Dress

 This brings us neatly to Valentino’s luminary love. The celebs adore him and I’m sure he returns the favour. Jackie Kennedy fell in love with Valentino’s designs 3 years before her marriage to Onassis. It was from Valentino’s 1968 ‘White Collection’ that she chose her wedding dress. Jackie O was one of many important people who insisted that she was protected sartorially, by Valentino, in preparation for the attack of the spotlight.

 From Audrey Hepburn to Julia Roberts to Iman, Valentino reigns supreme. The exhibition celebrates this fabulously. The main section features a long catwalk that stretches down the centre of the arched gallery space, either side a two tier spectator space features 137 couture gowns. Where there is no mannequin there is a seat with a handwritten note card, including the names of the famously stylish women who would frequent his shows. To the left of a beautiful autumnal coloured evening dress, with sequin and chiffon drappeggio   detailing, would sit Elizabeth Taylor, once seated, Gloria Guinness might turn around and admire the wonderful monochrome satin evening dress with jet and rhinestone embellishment. The showcase is magnifico and you definitely get a lot of evening dress for your euro.

157210057PM00015 Valentino  Review:  Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House by Tory Turk

1992 1993 Fall Winter HC Black velvet evening dress white ribbons -Worn by Julia Roberts to the 73rd Academy Awards in Los Angeles, 25 March 2001, at which she won Best Actress for Erin Brockovich

If Valentino’s 50-year career was a film it would have an impressive cast, but what must not be ignored is the craftsmanship behind the couture. Taking the glittering lights, celebs and glamour aside what you are left with is unmistakably beautifully handmade garments.  The exhibition is a ‘fashion show’ in its truest form and although there is a playful nod to the shallower side of fashion this could be considered as being cleverly ironic. Really the Italian maestro needs no celebrity endorsement as the anonymous mannequins on display exemplify half a century of fashion at its pinnacle.

Photo credit: Peter Macdiarmid

Tory Turk for FAD

PinExt Review:  Valentino: Master of Couture at Somerset House by Tory Turk

FAD NEWS

ART NEWS:Turner Prize Winning Artist Jeremy Deller Launches App To Mark WW1 CENTENARY

July 28, 2014

ART NEWS:Turner Prize Winning Artist Jeremy Deller Launches App To Mark WW1 CENTENARY

“LIGHTS OUT: Jeremy Deller” is a new, free app by the Turner Prize winning artist as part of 14-18 NOW

ART NEWS: NEW Art Gallery for London

July 28, 2014

ART NEWS:  NEW Art Gallery for London

Former Haunch of Venison London directors Ben Tufnell and Matt Watkins launch a new gallery, Parafin, in Woodstock Street, Mayfair, in September 2014. They are joined by the founder of London gallery Master Piper, Nicholas Rhodes.

ART NEWS: Eddie Peake + Gwilym Gold Muscle – Limited edition on Hymn/The Vinyl Factory

July 28, 2014

ART NEWS:  Eddie Peake + Gwilym Gold Muscle – Limited edition on Hymn/The Vinyl Factory

Muscle is the new single from Gwilym Gold, and the first release on HYMN, a new record label founded by Eddie Peake in collaboration with The Vinyl Factory.

WATCH: FABIO LATTANZI ANTINORI #PostDigitalWeekend @DegreeArt

July 26, 2014

WATCH: FABIO LATTANZI ANTINORI #PostDigitalWeekend @DegreeArt

GO SEE: 3D ONLINE VIDEO Exhibition by DVDTKM and PARTEL OLIVA

July 25, 2014

GO SEE: 3D ONLINE VIDEO Exhibition by DVDTKM and PARTEL OLIVA

The KENZO Prefall 2014 collection is in many ways a foray into the uncanny. Things are not always what they seem. Life at its most ordinary is skewed, twisted, until it appears fraught with surprises.

ART EVENT: ART SOCIAL 14 A four day festival of Music, Art + Culture @HoStBarnabas

July 25, 2014

ART EVENT: ART SOCIAL 14  A four day festival of Music, Art + Culture @HoStBarnabas

Opening next week a great festival of Music, art and Culture.

ART NEWS: Damien Hirst to open a MASSIVE NEW art space in Spring 2015

July 24, 2014

ART NEWS: Damien Hirst  to open a MASSIVE NEW art space in Spring 2015

Damien Hirst’s London art space due to open next spring Situation vacant to oversee artist’s exhibitions and collection

FAD DAILY

FAD DAILY

To receive daily news on Art Openings, Art Opportunities, Competitions and much more just give us your email below - Its that EASY

ADVERTISING