I’d been looking forward to visiting the world premiere of the Oscar de la Renta retrospective for months, and finally had a free morning to visit with my friend, Amy, who is a fashion designer – making her the perfect companion to tour the exhibit.
The presentation, curated by André Leon Talley, chronicles the early days of De la Renta’s career in Spain; his training at some of the most iconic fashion houses in Europe (Balenciaga! Lanvin! Balmain!); and his eventual rise to dress the most notable and celebrated personalities of our time under his namesake label.
The exhibit has many WOW moments, from the recreation of Steven Meisel’s 2010 Vogue photograph where models are socializing in De la Renta’s confections and white mohawks – to the red carpet finale featuring dresses made for Taylor Swift, Laura Bush, Penelope Cruz and Rihanna. There are also many more personal moments throughout the exhibit, that speak to his happy childhood in the Dominican Republic, the many clients that became close friends, and weekends spent with family at his longtime home in Kent, Connecticut.
Oscar carried with him the warmth of paradise, surely drawn from the sheer happiness of his childhood, growing up in a tropical environment in a huge family, surrounded by love. Throughout his life, there was always love and laughter and it infused everything he took to task, be it the designing of a simple cashmere coat, a suit, or a gorgeous evening dress; preparing a lovely dinner party; or tending to his gardens. Oscar loved life, and the light from within him beamed out to his world. –André Leon Talle
A beautiful legacy, beautifully chronicled.
If you’re local, make sure you visit the de Young before the exhibit closes on May 30th. You can find more details here.
Photos by Stacie Flinner for stacieflinner.com