Kara, this post's for you. I've been teasing Felix about how he calls textile house Liberty of London, Lady Liberty of London. But maybe he was just predicting the future. Because on this visit to New York City, home of Lady Liberty, we had an unexpected museum encounter with Liberty of London.
While at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. We decided to wander through an exhibit called American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity. This is one beautiful show that tracks American fashions for women from the later part of the 19th century through the golden age of Hollywood in the 30s and 40s. Not only are the clothes spectacular but the presentation is something only a museum like the Met can pull off. It's spectacular.
At the very end there's a large gallery awash with video projection that shows how modern fashion is influenced by the fashions of the past, from the Gibson Girl to the Flapper. Some of the video juxtapositions are amazing, like Beyonce's Put a Ring On It set against a performance by Josephine Baker: Brilliant.
But the reason for this post, is that in a strange mash up of NYC and Liberty of London, we ran into some Liberty fashion in the exhibit. And at the risk of inspiring the wrath of the gallery attendants, I took a photo in a gallery where photography is not allowed. Featured below, on the right is Evening Cape, 1910-15 (blue and green silk brocade woven in a peacock-feather pattern) created by Liberty & Company and designed by Arthur Silver. On the left is Evening Cape, 1900-1910 (pink and green silk brocade woven in a peacock-feather pattern.) These gowns are lavish and opulent in a way that makes the recent fabrics used for the Liberty of London Target collection look like something that, well, looks like it came from Target.
Before now, I may not have appreciated why some people get so excited about Liberty of London. But I won't make that mistake again. American Woman runs through August 15. And if you're in New York and have any interest in women's issues or fashion, I highly recommend this show.