Victoria and Albert Museum
London SW7 2RL
This major exhibition is a glamorous, comprehensive look at Italian Fashion from the end of the Second World War to the present day. The story is explored through the key individuals and organisations that have contributed to its reputation for quality and style. It includes both women’s and menswear to highlight the exceptional quality of techniques, materials and expertise for which Italy has become renowned.
The exhibition examines Italy’s dramatic transition from post-war ruins to the luxury paraded in the landmark ‘Sala Bianca’ catwalk shows held in Florence in the 1950s, which propelled Italian fashion onto the world stage. During the 1950s and ’60s the many Hollywood films that were shot on location in Italy had an enormous impact on fashion as stars like Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor became style ambassadors for Italian fashion, fuelling a keen international appetite for luxurious clothing made in Italy. On display are around 100 ensembles and accessories by leading Italian fashion houses including Simonetta, Pucci, Sorelle Fontana, Valentino, Gucci, Missoni, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Fendi, Prada and Versace, through to the next generation of fashion talent.