Animalia Fashion: among spiders, lobsters and swans, an exhibition of designers evoking the animal world at Palazzo Pitti

From Jan. 8 to May 5, 2019, Palazzo Pitti hosts the exhibition 'Animalia Fashion': creations by contemporary designers inspired by the animal world.

From Jan. 8 to May 5, 2019, the Fashion and Costume Museum at Palazzo Pitti is hosting the Animalia Fashion exhibition, curated by Patricia Lurati: the show aims to take visitors on a sort of zoological walk through the creations of contemporary fashion designers that evoke the most unexpected animal world. From France to China, from Russia to Italy, the clothes on display offer imaginative outfits that draw inspiration from nature.

In addition, the exhibition aims to focus on the unusual aspects of the animal world: the public should not expect leopard spots, but babirusa teeth; great absentees are zebrafish and tiger prints, to make way for insects, hedgehogs, swans, lobsters, snakes, fish, shells and corals. The relationship that fashion establishes with animals is investigated in a fun and poetic but also engaged way, at a time when climate change and a waning interest of superpowers in environmental issues are putting many species in danger.

The Animalia Fashion exhibition thus becomes one of the most surprising and evocative installations in the field of Haute Couture; it is pure lyricism in the proposed combinations, but also an invitation to reflect on the wonders of the universe, since the set-up was conceived as a fantastic, hyperbolic natural history museum. Clothes, accessories and jewelry thus become an experience, a journey through the history of zoological science, but above all a discovery of shapes and colors that from time to time evoke common or rare animals. Contemporary style (examples from 2000 to 2018 are displayed, lent by the most famous fashion houses and emerging designers) expresses its extraordinary creative power thanks also to unexpected pairings, in the Museum’s halls, with real stuffed animals and reptiles in formaldehyde, on loan from the Florentine Museum of Natural History La Specola,with spiders (in display cases) loaned by the Italian Association of Arachnology, but also with ancient paintings and objects from the Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography in Florence, and with reproductions of drawings from ancient bestiaries and pages from medieval tacuina sanitatis.

The eighteen rooms of the exhibition itinerary open with the section devoted to spiders and then continue with swans, shells, urchins, fish, corals, parrots, lobsters, babirusa, porcupine fish, snakes, beetles, flies, bees, crocodiles, and conclude with butterflies.

“In this roundup of nearly a hundred pieces including clothes, bags, shoes, jewelry and accessories,” explains Uffizi Director Eike D. Schmidt, “haute couture interprets a fabulous universe, where mannequins become creatures of a modern and poetic bestiary. It is also a tribute to the artistic and technical qualities of contemporary fashion, a field to which the Fashion and Costume Museum of Palazzo Pitti is devoting new energy and attention.” The curator and creator, Patricia Lurati, who intended the exhibition as the setting of an imaginary museum, adds, “In an exciting dialogue with this zoo of fabrics, feathers, leathers (and more) the visitor is surprised, involved in the discovery of the wonders of the animal world, which for the designers becomes a source of inspiration, or which creates unexpected juxtapositions in the imagination of the beholder.”

The exhibition opens daily, except Mondays, from 8:15 a.m. to 6:50 p.m. Tickets from Jan. 8 to Feb. 28, 2019: full €10; reduced €5 for E.U. citizens aged 18 to 25. Tickets from March 1, 2019 until the end of the exhibition: full € 16; reduced € 8 for E.U. citizens between 18 and 25 years old. Free ticket reserved for minors under 18 of any nationality, handicapped persons and one accompanying person, journalists, teachers and students of Architecture, Conservation of Cultural Heritage, Education Sciences, Bachelor of Arts and Philosophy degree with archaeological or historical-artistic degree addresses, Bachelor of Arts degree or corresponding courses in EU member states, Italian teachers with fixed-term and open-ended contracts in service at a public or equal school. For all info you can visit the Uffizi Galleries website.

Pictured is the Swan Room. From left to right: Ralf & Russo, Dress (Fall/Winter 2017-18 Couture); Dolce & Gabbana, Dress (Fall/Winter 2005-06); Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel, Wedding dress (Spring/Summer 2018 Haute Couture)

Animalia Fashion: among spiders, lobsters and swans, an exhibition of designers evoking the animal world at Palazzo Pitti
Animalia Fashion: among spiders, lobsters and swans, an exhibition of designers evoking the animal world at Palazzo Pitti

Warning: the translation into English of the original Italian article was created using automatic tools. We undertake to review all articles, but we do not guarantee the total absence of inaccuracies in the translation due to the program. You can find the original by clicking on the ITA button. If you find any mistake,please contact us.