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Ode to an Icon

Culture Watch
Diana Vreeland.

If you happen to be in Venice this Summer, be sure to make a stop at the dazzling Palazzo Fortuny for an exhibition of epic stylish proportion.

Through June 25, Diana Vreeland—the former Harper’s Bazaar fashion editor and Vogue editor in chief—is being celebrated with the exhibition entitled “Diana Vreeland After Diana Vreeland.” The show marks the first individual exhibition dedicated to the extraordinary editor, and explores the many different aspects of her work.

Visitors will be able to admire garments straight out of the history of fashion that have been brought to Italy for the first time. These include looks by Yves Saint Laurent and Givenchy worn by Vreeland, on loan from the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art; extraordinary pieces on loan from the Cristóbal Balenciaga Museum; the most iconic creations of Saint Laurent from the Fondation Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent, and, garments on loan from prestigious private collections and company archives, including Chanel, Schiaparelli, Missoni and Pucci.

As quoted in Women’s Wear Daily, “Venice was an obsession, she was passionate about this city, and there are strong parallels with [artist] Mariano Fortuny — they were both visionaries and this is the ideal location, an evocative place,” said Lisa Immordino Vreeland, the late editor’s granddaughter-in-law, who also directed and produced a documentary and a coffee-table book on Vreeland. Immordino Vreeland is married to Alexander Vreeland, the grandson of the fashion editor who shaped the history of Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue from the Forties to the Seventies and later became a special consultant to the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute until her death in 1989.

“It’s wonderful to see my grandmother, 23 years after [her death], is still being looked to in such a curatorial manner. There is a great respect for her body of work,” said Vreeland. He noted how his grandmother “made the relation between fashion and art possible. This is standing on her shoulders. For important fashion to be seen in a museum, she forged that territory. And it’s often the most lucrative part of a museum.”

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