Sant’Angelo Exhibition Opened to Great Reception


“Designing the Second Skin: Giorgio di Sant’Angelo 1971-1991”, which ran from December 4, 2012 to December 14, 2012, was a great success.  As the first New York exhibition featuring the work of Italian-born American designer Giorgio di Sant’Angelo, Parsons The New School for Design and the MA Fashion Studies program should be proud of the overall reception and excitement surrounding the exhibition.  “Judging by the turn out, and even curiosity leading up to the exhibition, I can tell that the public reaction was more than positive towards the Sant Angelo Exhibition,” says Rebecca Lazar, MAFS class of 2013.  “It not only shows that the Fashion Studies program challenges its students creatively, instead of just academically, but it also highlighted the Parsons’ Fashion Archive.  By demonstrating hands-on experience and a working collection, it allows the program to be more than just a lesson in theory and research, but real world, creative  experience too.”  During the deinstallation of the exhibition, several Parsons students came into the gallery, expressing their sadness that the show had ended.  One young man even asked if he could take one last look at the garments before they were to be carted back to the Parsons’ Fashion Archive.  Rachel Kinnard, MAFS class of 2013 seconds Lazar, “Student produced fashion exhibitions, like ‘Designing the Second Skin: Giorgio di Sant’Angelo 1971-1991,’ are a key part of the MA Fashion Studies experience.  The process is an exercise in teamwork, problem solving, and conceptual thought.  For students, exhibition making is an opportunity to put ideas into practice through a creative and engaging project.”

The blog, Worn Through, which focuses on fashion and dress through a sociocultural and historical lens, wrote a review of the exhibition.  “This small and precisely curated exhibition chooses to focus most sharply on works from di Sant’Angelo’s oeuvre that highlight this interest in the human form and his promotion of dancewear elements within high fashion, most notably through his use of textiles such as lycra and nylon, and embrace of silhouettes such as the bodysuit,” writes Worn Through contributor Mellissa Huber.  Huber goes on to praise Parsons and its MA Fashion Studies program for allowing graduate students the opportunity to design and curate their own exhibition–an opportunity seldom found in most museum internships.  To read Mellissa Huber’s review of “Designing the Second Skin: Giorgio di Sant’Angelo 1971-1991” click here.

The exhibition was held in the Arnold and Sheila Aronson Galleries at the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center, Parsons The New School for Design, 66 Fifth Avenue.  The works on view were drawn from the Parsons Fashion Archive—a collection of nearly 10,000 garments, including a number of pieces donated to Parsons by the Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Sant’Angelo works were originally donated to the Met by Parsons faculty member Martin Price, Sant-Angelo’s design assistant and partner, who has been an instrumental force in keeping Sant’Angelo’s spirit alive. The exhibition is curated by graduate students in the MA Fashion Studies, MA in the History of Decorative Arts and Design, and Master of Architecture program at Parsons under the supervision of faculty member Francesca Granata.

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