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Everson Museum opens exhibition of Marie Antoinette-inspired fashion by VPA faculty member Jeffrey Mayer Sept. 20
Everson Museum opens exhibition of Marie Antoinette-inspired fashion by VPA faculty member Jeffrey Mayer Sept. 20September 10, 2008SU News ServicesSUnews@syr.edu
The Everson Museum of Art will present “Marie Antoinette: Styling the 18th-Century Superstar,” a unique exhibition of contemporary fashion design by Jeffrey Mayer, an internationally acclaimed fashion designer and associate professor of fashion design in Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA), Sept. 20-Jan. 11 at the museum on 401 Harrison St., Syracuse.
An opening night lecture by Mayer will be held Friday, Sept. 19, at 5:30 p.m. in the Everson’s Hosmer Auditorium, followed by a reception and exhibition preview from 6-8 p.m. The lecture and reception are free for Everson members and $10 for non-members. Reservations are not required.
“This exhibition mixes it up with media and disciplines,” says Everson Director Steven Kern. “‘Marie Antoinette’ reaches deeply into history and popular culture. It is innovative and at times challenges tradition.”
Mayer focuses on the concepts of fantasy, luxury and exoticism found in Marie Antoinette’s style vocabulary. Fantasy ruled in the court of Marie Antoinette and can be seen in the exhibition’s mannequins, with elaborate silk gowns and hairstyles like the extremely tall beehive trimmed with models of ships in sail. Luxury was achieved for Marie Antoinette through the use of the finest fabrics, laces and embroidery. Exoticism is seen through the inspiration of Asia, Africa and the Americas on decoration for fashion and furnishings. Mayer translates each of these concepts in the exhibition, juxtaposing modern designs and accessories with the style foundation of Marie Antoinette.
“Marie Antoinette” began as an exhibition in Lyman Hall, home of VPA’s fashion design program. For the Everson’s exhibition, Mayer expanded the visual experience to include 48 mannequins painstakingly styled and accessorized with 20th- and 21st-century fashion designs created by American and European designers. Mayer spares no detail with over-the-top designs and highly embellished accessories, including fans with interactive audio messages. The models are tightly grouped to create mini-narratives inspired by the anything-but-ordinary life of Marie Antoinette.
The Everson is open to the public Tuesday-Friday and Sunday, noon-5 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5 per person. For more information on the exhibition and related events and programs, visit http://www.everson.org.