Madeleine Vionnet (French, Chilleurs-aux-Bois 1876–1975 Paris)
Length at CB: 60 in. (152.4 cm)
Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Mrs. Anthony Wilson, 1963
Not on view
Madeleine Vionnet was a consummate technician, particularly known for her innovative use of the bias cut and the mathematically precise construction of her garments. Minimalist by philosophy, Vionnet's construction details were often executed so as to create decorative effects, obviating the need for any trimming. This dress was made at the end of Vionnet's career and comes full circle with inspiration from Greek drapery, which was one of her primary influences from the very beginning of her career. Although it features a more structured form and has actual jewelry decoration on it, it has bias cowl draping at the back and a fascinating curved seam that bisects the front panel of the dress: sure indications of Vionnet's life-long unparalleled facility with fabric.
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