The San Francisco’s De Young Museum hosted the well anticipated “Oscar de la Renta: The Retrospective” curated by Vogue Magazine’s André Leon Talley. This estimated 150 piece exhibition displays the most recognizable creations of the late fashion icon Oscar de la Renta. Beginning with his early career of Spanish, Eastern-Asia and Russian influences, down to his 1990’s- 1980’s garden themed Pierre Balmain tea dressed and one of a kind red carpet moments.
The event commemorated his life and career, ranging from personal details about his downfalls and triumphs to his inspirations and collaboration. This part of the exhibit joined with the dresses to create a very cohesive fashion exposé. When it came to many of the designs, there was no need for a magnifier to see how well the garment was constructed with all of the detailing in embroidery, beading and pattern work.
It was all very breath taking, to say the least. There was quite an enjoyable variety of his creations to take in and digest, with so much elegance, beauty and awe to reflect upon. Towards the finale of the exposition, there was a room that featured his Hollywood show stopping gowns that were previously worn by power women like Karlie Kloss, Taylor Swift, Sarah Jessica Parker and Rihanna.
As seen above, is a gown that Karlie Kloss wore to the 2014 MET Gala made from black silk-satin, adorned with gold lame and gilt feather appliqué. Across from this dress rests a white strapless rose embroidered, 1950’s inspired gown that Rihanna wore on the red carpet and to accepted her honor at the 2011 BRIT Awards. At the time, the dress was chosen exclusively for her by De la Renta to match her fire-red colored hair.
In the middle of those show stoppers was the Sara Jessica Parker 2014 MET Gala dress. This piece that came from his ready-to-wear collection was a white and black petal dress that resembled a birdcage and stamped with the traditional Oscar de la Renta signature.
Whether you followed the audio tour, a whimsical tour guide or as I found myself– a self-proclaimed guide— there was no way one could miss the uniquely stunning display. As the eyes traveled each at arm’s length dresses one could only image what it felt like for his women to parade in those dresses.
As I’ve seen in the past with the De Young’s Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit and the Metropolitan Museum of Art annual fashion displays, is that fashion exhibitions draw in people from all walks of life. This is a must see show for anyone inspired or cultured by the fashion world, including aspiring artists, artists and non-artist alike.
De la Renta’s dynamic and dimensional creations helped shift fashion into a new fashion landscape over many years of contribution— and the Retrospective exhibition reincarnates that spirit entirely. May his designs continue to inspire for generations to come.
Tyler J. Drinnen, is the Founder and Editor in Chief of iTEM MAGAZINE,
a poet and freelance fashion writer, photographer and abstract visual content producer.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Media Studies from Sonoma State University, where he wrote a weekly Opinion Column For
The Star, dabbled with his own radio podcast format, titled Saturday Nite Scandal, and helped to create one of the first of 25 Professional Student Lead PR Firms in the USA.
From there on, he continued his work by interning with Sonoma Discoveries Magazine and then shortly after wrote and interned for Fashion School Daily, where he solidified his love for feature writing and working with emerging talents from around the world.
In December of 2016, he received an Honorary Master of Arts in Fashion Journalism from the Academy of Art University. And what an achievement that was, to be the first in his program to have graduated a full semester early. Bringing him to four degrees in a short five and a half years, nothing will stop him from bringing art to the eyes of many.
He has worked in the fashion industry for nearly a decade, from commercial retail management to corporate level ghost writing. Now - he the poet - T.J.D. takes his life public with the independent launch of the urban California lifestyle based fashion-art movement, iTEM MAGAZINE: A Platform For Rising Artists.