Menu | In the (K)now
The Leading Salons of the WorldThe Leading Salons of the World
| |

The Met: Fashion in an age of technology

The Costume Institute's spring 2016 exhibition, presented in the Museum's Robert Lehman Wing, will explore how fashion designers are reconciling the handmade and the machine-made in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear.

With more than 170 ensembles dating from the early 20th century to the present, the exhibition will address the founding of the haute couture in the 19th century, when the sewing machine was invented, and the emergence of a distinction between the hand (manus) and the machine (machina) at the onset of mass production. It will explore this ongoing dichotomy, in which hand and machine are presented as discordant tools in the creative process, and question the relationship and distinction between haute couture and ready-to-wear.

The Robert Lehman Wing galleries on the Museum's first floor and ground level will present a series of case studies to unravel the hand/machine conundrum. At the center will be an installation of toiles and prototypes presented as garments in the making or "monuments to ideas." Emanating from this presentation will be a series of rooms based on traditional métiers of the haute couture, including embroidery, feather work, artificial flowers, pleating, lacework, and leatherwork, which will be presented alongside versions that incorporate innovative processes, such as 3D printing, computer modeling, bonding and laminating, laser cutting, and ultrasonic welding. A room dedicated to the ateliers of tailoring and dressmaking will reflect the traditional division of a maison de couture.

Here are some selected photos of dresses that you can see at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York:

Karl Lagerfeld (French, born Hamburg, 1938) for House of Chanel (French, founded 1913)
Wedding ensemble (back view), autumn/winter 2014–15 haute couture
Courtesy of CHANEL Patrimoine Collection
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel (French, 1883–1971)
Suit, 1963–68 haute couture
French
Wool, silk, metal
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Mrs. Lyn Revson, 1975 (1975.53.7a–e)
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Yves Saint Laurent (French, 1936–2008)
Evening dress, autumn/winter 1969–70 haute couture
French
Silk, bird-of-paradise feathers
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Baron Philippe de Rothschild, 1983 (1983.619.1a, b)
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Iris van Herpen (Dutch, born 1984)
Dress, autumn/winter 2013–14 haute couture
Dutch
Silicone, cotton
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Purchase, Friends of The Costume Institute Gifts, 2015 (2016.14)
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Raf Simons (Belgian, born 1968) for House of Dior (French, founded 1947)
Ensemble, spring/summer 2015 haute couture
Courtesy of Christian Dior Haute Couture
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Issey Miyake (Japanese, born 1938) for Miyake Design Studio (Japanese, founded 1970)
"Flying Saucer" dress, spring/summer 1994
Courtesy of The Miyake Issey Foundation
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Christian Dior (French, 1905–1957)
"Vilmiron" dress, spring/summer 1952 haute couture
French
Silk, nylon
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Mrs. Byron C. Foy, 1955 (C.I.55.76.20a–g)
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Christopher Kane (British, born 1982)
Dress, spring/summer 2014
Courtesy of Christopher Kane
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Hussein Chalayan (British, born Cyprus, 1970)
"Kaikoku" floating dress, autumn/winter 2011–12
Courtesy of Swarovski
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Nicolas Ghesquière (French, born 1971) for House of Balenciaga (French, founded 1937)
Dress, spring/summer 2003
Courtesy of Balenciaga Archives, Paris
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

Karl Lagerfeld (French, born Hamburg, 1938) for House of Chanel (French, founded 1913)
Wedding ensemble, autumn/winter 2005–6 haute couture
Courtesy of CHANEL Patrimoine Collection
Photo © Nicholas Alan Cope

 

 

 

Gallery views of The Costume Institute's spring 2016 exhibition, Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology, narrated by exhibition curator Andrew Bolton.

If you are a beauty business, please login or register to view our exclusive B2B pricing!

Let me Browse
Sign in
Register

Forgot password?

×

If you are a beauty professional, please login or register to view our exclusive LSW professional site!

Let me Browse
Sign in
Register

Forgot password?

×

Membership zone

×

Please sign in to your account or register!

×