Parisian fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier recently debuted his new exhibit “The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk” at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. It’s a show to please fashionistas, yes, but also cinephiles, theatre-lovers and culture hounds alike…
The JPG exhibit premieres here in Montreal and will subsequently travel to Dallas and then San Francisco. But why not come here during the summer, Montreal’s most seductive season? And why not see the made-in-Quebec exhibit in the city where it was born. There’s no other designer on the planet as creative, talented and provocative as Mr. Gaultier. A talented, homegrown team has put together the ultimate showcase of a most enchanting career – thus far. I know, I’m gushing.
Some key observations: The first novelty that guests encounter are the talking mannequins – which you just have to see to believe. Second, JPG’s illustrious portfolio spanning 35 years is not displayed chronologically but by theme, more specifically “boudoir, skin deep, punk cancan, urban jungle and metropolis”. Third, rooms are painted black, and as such lend a slightly eerie (in a good way), surreal ambience. A midsummer night’s dream, indeed.
In another unusual twist, Montreal will also welcome a massive parade in Gaultier’s honour on July 16, starting at the Museum and culminating at Quartier des Spectacles, where a JPG-fest will ensue. I heard that the honouree may show up to checkout the hoopla, but that hasn’t been confirmed as of yet.
I’d also like to add that, for those who want a bit of Gaultier to take home with them, there’s a catalog jam-packed with JPG photos, historical tidbits and celebrity anecdotes that’s available exclusively at the museum. More fashion-inclined shoppers can also pick up the classic mariner shirts at the MMFA gift shop or across the street at Holt Renfrew. So you’ll be able to have your stripes – and wear them too.
The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk, June 17-October 2, 2011
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 1380 Sherbrooke Street West, (514) 285-2000