In the documentary “The Last Emperor,” Valentino Garavani celebrated his 45th anniversary in 2007 with a lavish three-day affair in Rome, which included an exhibition at the Ara Pacis. On November 29, the Italian couturier will open the first real-life retrospective dedicated to his career since his retirement at Somerset House in London.
The show, “Valentino: Master of Couture,” will feature 130 of his couture pieces worn by women like Julia Roberts, who donned a black vintage Valentino gown when she won an Oscar in 2001; Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, who was dressed in one of his creations on her wedding day; Grace Kelly; and Sophia Loren. Those dresses, along with mini-skirts, capes, caftans, and more will be displayed on a Valentino-themed catwalk.
The exhibition will be divided into three sections: History of Valentino, which will include photographs and keepsakes; the Catwalk; and the Atelier, where films documenting his couture techniques will be screened.
“Each of these designs has a beautiful story,” said Valentino in a press release. “The atelier crafted each so diligently by hand, taking hours, sometimes days to complete. The details are incredibly intricate. Though outside the runway shows and events, the dresses have rarely been seen. To be able to showcase these designs at Somerset House, where they can be seen in great detail by the public, is very unique.”
If you can’t make it to London by March 3, 2013, when the exhibition closes, you can always check out the virtual museum that the designer unveiled last December.