Dialoguing with art in the Museum of Costume and Fashion
Starting 19 December 2017, visitors to the Museum of Costume and Fashion will be able to enjoy a new exhibition arrangement curated by Caterina Chiarelli, Simonella Condemi and Tommaso Lagattolla with the direct involvement of the Gallery of Modern Art in Pitti Palace, home of the paintings and sculptures that have been built into the new exhibition tour. The tour sets out to highlight the interaction between the creations of artist-stylists and artist-couturiers working from the 1930s to the present day, underscoring the various different artistic languages that have followed on from one another in an era full of major upheavals in the sphere of our society's aesthetic and figurative codes.
The title selected instantly points to the innovative method adopted: "Traces. Dialoguing with Art" conjures up, and draws our attention to, voices that have either been lost or that have now been rendered silent in their predictability.
The exhibition at the Museum of Costume and Fashion aims to revolutionise the exhibition criteria adopted to date for this kind of event: the exhibits on display – 107 items of clothing, accessories, paintings and sculptures – are no longer configured into "dominant categories" and silent "complementary adornments"; rather, they engage in active dialogue. All of the exhibits become leading players in their own right, interacting both with one another and with their own images reflected in the mirrors that play such an important role in the arrangement, helping to create an evocative and mesmerising environment in which space is dilated, the lines and colours of the clothes are repeated and the lights enhancing their forms are amplified. The arrangement of the clothes and works of art is not perfectly chronological because it seeks to encourage visitors to adopt a different approach to the exhibits, affording priority to their formal affinities, while also highlighting similarities of a cultural nature. Thus what the curators have endeavoured to achieve is a layout capable of revealing echoes of design and ornament not only between the different items of clothing themselves but also between the clothes on the one hand and the paintings and sculptures on display in the various sections on the other.
The new clothing and textile storage facility for the Museum of Costume and Fashion's huge collection, which is located in the new wing adjacent to the first storage facility in Pitti Palace, will also be presented to the media on this occasion.
"The presentation of the new storage facility for storing fashion collections," said Andrea Cavicchi, President of the Centro di Firenze della Moda Italiana and of thea Fondazione Pitti Immagine Discovery, "marks a crucial moment of transition in the CFMI, Pitti Immagine and Fondazione Pitti Discovery's cooperation venture with the Uffizi Galleries. In the two years that we have been working together, in addition to producing the monographic exhibition on Karl Lagerfeld and the Museo effimero della Moda curated by Olivier Saillard, we have also worked on creating a permanent structure for the conservation and enhancement of contemporary fashion".
Director of the Uffizi Galleries Eike Schmidt, for his part, said that "the new storage facilities, funded with a financial contribution from the Centro Fiorentino per la Moda Italiana, Pitti Immagine and the Fondazione Pitti Discovery, are absolutely on the same level as those of the world's other great fashion museums in technological terms; and they provide umpteenth proof of the fact that the conservation and dissemination of culture benefit enormously from museums opening up to other realities: the Uffizi Galleries' cooperation with the productive environment of Tuscan firms, and of these firms in particular, has brought innovation and ideas to the city, along with clear practical achievements such as the new storage facilities. Each player is lent strength by all the others in a productive dialogue that is useful for all, just as each item in the Traces exhibition is enhanced through intelligent, and often unexpected, juxtaposition with the other works on display".
The exhibition, promoted by the Ministero dei beni e delle attività culturali e del turismo and by the Uffizi Galleries with Firenze Musei, is accompanied by a virtual tour which can be accessed in the IperVisioni section.