Journey of a Dress: the Story of Diane von Furstenberg

January 27, 2014

A collection of wrap dresses by Diane von Furstenberg at LACMA West's "DVF: Journey of a Dress" Exhibition

On Saturday January 25th, twenty Los Angeles museums opened up their doors free of charge. I was absolutely delighted by Los Angeles Museum Day and the huge turnout at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (aka LACMA), and as an art history major, I couldn't help but to take advantage of free admission to an otherwise costly cultural institution.

The fact that the LACMA West was currently hosting "DVF: Journey of a Dress" only further inspired me to make Saturday one of culture and fashion, and my Big (sorority sister) and I ventured to West Hollywood to learn all about the wrap dress.

If you are in the Los Angeles area (or visiting before April 1, when the exhibition ends) I highly recommend stopping by the Diane von Furstenberg retrospective. It's free (!!) and it is very well done.

Filled with the punchy prints and bold colors that Diane is known for, the visitor is lead through a visual timeline of the iconic wrap dress, with a series of images from magazines and pop culture emphasizing the far-reaching power of the working woman staple.

A society girl and one-time princess (yes, you read that right - Furstenberg was married to a German prince once upon a time; when they divorced, she decided to keep the last name) may have been an unlikely candidate for everywoman fashion icon, but if the last forty years have taught us anything, it's that DvF knows how to make a woman look beautiful and powerful.

Her signature quote, "Feel like a woman. Wear a dress!" perfectly resonates with her iconic dress and the motto of the seventies, but the quote is just as relevant in the twenty-first century.

After walking through the timeline hallway, one emerges into an expansive room filled with archival dresses, punctuated by loud geometric patterns and prints that wrap around the floors and walls. The collection of wrap dresses is separated into five categories (black & white, animal print, geometric, nature, and multicolor) and includes both pieces from the past and present.

Another room served as an art gallery, with paintings, drawings, and photographs of Diane or her clothes. The standouts - a series of Warhol screens and a group of portraits shot by Chuck Close. It was all beautiful, though, and it made the point that I so often stress to others - that art and fashion are quite closely interrelated - perfectly evident.

Go see it if you have the chance. You won't be disappointed!

Me, surrounded by ferocious technicolor leopard print (J. Crew shirt and skirt, Kate Spade purse, C Wonder boots)

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I love hearing your thoughts! Thanks for reading! ♥︎Lindsey