Madame Grès (Alix Barton) (French, Paris 1903–1993 Var region)
Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Mrs. William Randolph Hearst, Jr., 1986
Not on view
Madame Alix Grès' career spanned five decades and throughout them all she excelled in her ability to manipulate fabric and use its innate characteristics to enhance her designs. Known for her classically influenced evening gowns, Grès also drew inspiration from regional costume. Here, she takes costume from India and adapts it for evening wear. The bifurcated, wraparound form--the dhoti, worn by men, and the wrapped sari, worn by women--is recreated in a dramatic, sculptural form. The single-shoulder bodice construction reflects her penchant for asymmetry, while the triangular bifurcated skirt is draped to create a pocket that is reminiscent of the pouch-like "sinus" created when draping a Roman toga.