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"Petal"

Designer:
Charles James (American, born Great Britain, 1906–1978)
Date:
1951
Culture:
American
Medium:
silk
Dimensions:
Length at CB: 60 in. (152.4 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Marietta Tree, 1965
Accession Number:
C.I.65.36.2
Not on view
The petal ball gown, a variant on a dress first made for Millicent Rogers in 1949, is typical of James's interst in deriving designs from nature, at least purportedly, with such biomorphic forms and names in preparatory sketches, including the tree, butterfly, swan, and clover-leaf. But James's hyper-nature was invariably rather more dreamer and fantacist than laboratory biologist.
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