The MET: Heavenly Bodies Exhibition

Hey guys! Around two weeks ago I was able to go to the MET and see the Heavenly Bodies Exhibition. It was very interesting to see a combination of fashion and religious design in one. Unfortunately, I was unable to see the whole exhibit since it is spread out (and there is only so much time in a day) but I saw the works on Fifth Ave which were in the Medieval, Byzantine, and Lehman Galleries.

DRESSED MADONNA I – Yves Saint Laurent, Statuary Vestment for the Virgin of El Rocio, 1985

The attire below was created for the statue of the Virgin in the Chapel of Notre-Dame de Compassion. Father Jean-Louis Ducamp commissioned this piece, and it based on a sixteenth century attire that is in the Hermitage of El Rocio, Spain. It is believed that Mary’s body shape was found in a trunk of a tree that grew where the Hermitage in Spain is located (according to legend).

This piece was probably the most admired in the MET; it was absolutely stunning and extravagant.


CELESTIAL HIERARCHY I – Christian Lacroix, Wedding Ensemble, 2009-2010. 

This is another beautiful piece. It was inspired by the religious beliefs that Mary is the Queen of Heaven; this is a wedding attire. Lacroix was inspired by dressed Madonna figures, which is popular in Spanish – speaking countries during Holy Week. Lacroix commented that his “Madonna” wedding dresses intimate the concept of a “virgin bride.” Lacroix also stated that “every bridal gown, somewhere between the robes of a saint and a traditional Neapolitan costume, seems to me to contain a trace of those vanished memories, religious and superstitious, solemn and garish, mirage-like and forever fixed.”


CELESTIAL HIERARCHY I – John Galliano for Dior, “Madonna” Wedding Ensemble, 2005-6

This piece, another beautiful work, is called “Madonna,” and it is a part of a group that also featured “Virtue,” “Virgin,” and “Archangel.” This group was inspired by the Cuzco School of art in Peru (active around sixteenth to eighteenth century). Also, Galliano stated that he was influenced by Cusquena paintings which included paintings of archangels/angels with guns (Galliano presented these attires on the runway with guns to reference these paintings).


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