Exhibition Willy Rizzo Studio from 6th March to the 15th of May


Atelier Chanel Paris 1954 Mademoiselle Chanel et Vera Valdez
Atelier Chanel Paris 1954 Coco Chanel with model Vera Valdez

Dear Shaded Viewers,

An interview will be forthcoming in a few weeks with the wife of the photographer Willy Rizzo but I thought that, if you are in Paris, you might enjoy a visit to the exhibition Willly Rizzo that just opened the 6th of March and continues till May 15th. Willy Rizzo was a dear friend of Chanel , they met in the 40's and Mademoiselle Chanel gave him "carte blanche" to shoot the famous first lady of fashion.

He was the first to register her famous comeback in 1954. After 14 years, Chanel launched triomphant return showing her new favorite models "Vera Valdez and Marie Helene Arnaud dressed in her favorite colors: beige, black and red. 

During the gold Period of the house of Chanel (late 50's and early 60's) Willy captured candid moments from her famous 1959 collection, her meticulous crat at work and how she constructed all the dresses and the famous "tailleurs ganses" at each model.

Chanel was fascinated by Willy's charm and elegance.  Here for the first time after more than 58 years, you can see those images with the unique talent of Rizzo's Eye: the portrait of an Era, the elegance of the after war and the joie de vivre of an epoque where they lived and had fun with their art. 

A few years ago I met with the curator of the exhibition, Danniel Rangel and he introduced me to the model Vera Valdez. At that time there was a documentary being made about her and of course it was to focus on her years with Chanel. I have no idea if the film was completed or not. None the less it gave me great pleasure to see the amazing images captured by Willy Rizzo and to meet his wife Dominique.

I highly recommend you take the time to visit the exhibition which is open Monday to Saturday from 11 to 13h and 14h to 19h. The limited edition photographs are for sale.

Studio Willy Rizzo 

12 rue de Verneuil

75007 Paris France




Diane Pernet

A LEGENDARY FIGURE IN FASHION and a pioneer of blogging, Diane is a respected journalist, critic, curator and talent-hunter based in Paris. During her prolific career, she designed her own successful brand in New York, costume designer, photographer, and filmmaker.