Gilded Era Books, festivals, and exhibitions for the art enthusiast
In an era where women wore larger-than-life ball gowns decked in velvet and luscious silk, Charles James was the one most women turned to. Dedicated to the famed couturier, the monumental exhibition ‘Charles James: Beyond Fashion’ explores his design process and unique use of sculptural, scientific, and mathematical approaches to construct revolutionary ball gowns.
“Charles James was a wildly idiosyncratic, emotionally fraught fashion genius who was also committed to teaching,” said Harold Koda, curator in charge of The Costume Institute. “He dreamt that his personal creative evolution and the continuous metamorphosis of his designs would be preserved.”
From the 1920s right up to his death in 1978, James’s breathtaking creations were worn by society swans such as Austine Hearst and Millicent Rogers. The Metropolitan Museum of Art has now aquired the most definitive body of the couturier’s work, and the most comprehensive collection of a fashion designer’s work in any museum. ‘Charles James: Beyond Fashion’ is at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York until August 10.
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Charles James Ball Gowns, 1948, Cecil Beaton
Charles James With Model, 1948, Cecil Beaton