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Yves Saint Laurent

Start Date 14 December 1983
End Date 2 September 1984
Venue Metropolitan Museum of Art
Location New York, USA
Curator Diana Vreeland
Designer Jeffrey Daly and David Harvey

On Wednesday, December 14, a major retrospective exhibition covering 25 years of designs by Yves Saint Laurent will open in the Metropolitan Museum’s Costume Institute. The exhibition of more than 150 costumes, both couture and theatrical, created by Saint Laurent since the establishment of his own couture house in 1962, will also include highlights from the collections he designed for the House of Dior from 1957 to 1960. Many of the costumes
come from The Costume Institute’s own extensive collection of Yves Saint Laurent designs, and there are major loans from Mr. Saint Laurent’s personal archives and from public and private collections in Europe and the United States. Paintings from the Metropolitan Museum’s collections will augment the exhibition. The exhibition, made possible by Gustav Zumsteg of Abraham, Zurich, will remain on view through September 2, 1984.

Yves Saint Laurent: 25 Years of Design is the twelfth annual costume exhibition organized and selected by Diana Vreeland, Special Consultant to The Costume Institute, and the first exhibition The Costume Institute has devoted entirely to the work of a living designer. In her introduction to the exhibition catalogue, Mrs. Vreeland has written of Mr. Saint Laurent: ” … for twenty-six years he has kept women’s clothes on the same high level. He is followed across the oceans of the world by women who look young, live young and are young no matter what their age … Half of the time he is inspired by the street and half of the time the street gets its style from Yves Saint Laurent. His vehicle to the street is pret-a-porter– but behind it all there are the superb designs of his couture workroom from which emerged the most beautiful and dashing dresses of the last quarter century. He is without any question the leader in all fashion today.” The story of Yves Saint Laurent’s phenomenal rise to stardom in the world of fashion, his subsequent influence in the higher realms of haute couture and his impact on the “fashions of the streets” (the ready-to-wear industry) is by now a legend.

Images courtesy of Metropolitan Museum of Art