Indianapolis Museum of Art
features innovative designs from a block-buster cast of contemporary and
avant-garde fashion designers. These artists and their designs thwart traditional
notions of clothing as functional, and instead elevate the body to canvas and
fashion to art. Upon entering the exhibit, the viewer is immediately
reminded of the juxtaposition between fashion and function by Rudi Gernreich's
notorious "monokini" – the first topless swimsuit. Full
coverage on the bottom is suspended by two halter straps rising through the
cleavage of the bared chest. Famous for his "futuristic" and
"controversial" designs, Gernreich's avocado dress with orange trim
from 1961 is soft and skimpy with a high rounded neck and large geometric holes
on either side of the torso. Also on display, several pieces from the
French bad-boy of fashion, Franco Moschino. Upon first glance, Moschino's
pale green wool suit appears to be in the style of a classic Chanel suit with
slim skirt and braided trim. After a closer look, the viewer
realizes the double "cc " buttons are missing and instead, cowbells
hang in their place – irreverently poking fun at the upscale designer.
Gianni Versace's cat suit from 1991 features body as art. A skintight cat
suit adorned with bold and graphic screen prints of Marilyn Monroe and James
Dean unmercifully pay homage to Andy Warhol's pop art style. Other
designers on display include Issey Miyake, Junya Watanabe, and Thierry Mugler.
Through January 30, 2011.