It’s a sign of the times - men are
sharing the fashion spotlight. At both the Chanel and Lacroix shows
earlier this month, the women’s Ready-to-Wear collections were
interspersed with men’s pieces. At Dior and Givenchy, Hedi Slimane
and Ozwald Boateng, respectively, have been entrusted with creating
a new masculine interpretation of the label. Never has the male body
(pierced, tattooed, adorned or nude) been exhibited with so much pride.
So for the first time in history, the Musée de la Mode et du Textile,
the sacred space dedicated to Paris fashion, has been given over to an exhibition
focusing exclusively on men’s apparel from the seventeenth century straight
through to the runways of today. The peacock plumes unfold in the majestic embroideries
of the court of Louis IV and in the billowing skirts of Jean Paul Gaultier.
The traditional masculine wardrobe, that of tailcoats, redingotes, sport coats
and tuxedos was born after the French revolution. If the classic three piece
suit filled an excessively monotonous period from the Second Empire on, it was
the 1960s that saw artistic renewal led by Pierre Cardin and André Courrèges.
But you have to wait for the last decade to find the panache of modernity on
the runway at Alexander McQueen and John Galliano.
More than three hundred suits and accessories, accompanied by graphic documents
and albums of samples, were gathered to put in perspective the art of ornamenting
the male body.
The exhibition will run until April 30, 2006
Les Arts Décoratifs - musée de la Mode et du Textile
107 rue de Rivoli - 75001 Paris
Tél. : 01 44 55 57 50
Métro : Palais-Royal, Pyramides ou Tuileries