Sunday, July 9, 2017

"Love is Love": Jean-Paul Gaultier @ the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts


Anyone interested in textiles and clothing design will be blown away by the current show of French fashion designer Jean-Paul Gaultier, being staged at the MMFA, and running until October 9, 2017. The innovative use of materials and the quality of workmanship are exceptional, and the concepts are as outrageous as one might expect.


Net lace dress with large-patterned embroidery
and white linen cut-outs.
Gown worn by Australian pop singer Kylie Minogue
in her "Like a Drug" video

From the Museum's website, 
"In 2011, the MMFA presented The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk, the first international retrospective devoted to the famous French designer. Produced by the MMFA in collaboration with the Maison Jean Paul Gaultier, it captivated over two million visitors in twelve cities around the world (Montreal, Dallas, San Francisco, Madrid, Rotterdam, Stockholm, New York, London, Melbourne, Paris, Munich and Seoul) – a record for a fashion exhibition!"

Sifnos lace blouse with olive tree-pattern beading /
Cotton duck skirt; white leather overskirt

Writes Gaultier,
“The tour of the exhibition The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier gave me the opportunity to show my creations around the world. I call this show by the MMFA ‘my biggest fashion show ever!’ In keeping with tradition, whereby an haute couture fashion show finishes with the bridal gown and to thank Quebecers for their enthusiasm for my work, but also the MMFA’s creative team behind this record-setting tour, it is only fitting that the grand finale feature my most beautiful wedding gowns, most of which are being shown for the first time in this Montreal exclusive. Love Is Love, long live the newlyweds!” 

Silk tulle and jersey gown draped and pleated in the "Madame Grès" manner,
adorned with a shield lent three-dimensionality by being entirely padded with feathers.
230 hours of work, 35 metres of tulle

Many of the thirty-six mannequins are positioned on a large pedestal, made to resemble a huge wedding cake. Ribbons of "fondant" serve to display others. The faces of some mannequins are animated with a sort of projection effect.


Hand-knit pure wool Irish fisherman's sweater dress
with fringe and pompom embroidery /
Handknit Irish fisherman's sweater, matching cream long johns
Note the single bridal veil over both.

It was interesting to note the range of "whites" used by Gaultier, ranging from palest nude to palest yellow to cream and grey and yes, white. Likewise, the theme of the show itself is a celebration of diversity.


Skirt and back-buttoned cardigan embroidered with Swarovski crystals

Skirt and back-buttoned cardigan embroidered with Swarovski crystals (detail)

For more information about this show, please visit the exhibition website.

2 comments:

Jacki Long said...

Wow! and thank you!

Heather Dubreuil said...

The photos really don't do the show justice, Jacki. I'm glad you enjoyed the post.