Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch at the Museum at FIT

Dear Shaded Viewers,

Last stop before leaving NYC was the Museum at FIT and a chat with Valerie Steele and Susanne Bartsch. I've known Susanne for decades and spent many a night at the Copacabana and all of the venues in the 80's before the Copa and after it. Not to mention I spent 6 months working on her Paris version of the Love Ball working with a 22 year old Alexandre de Betak and a young Etienne Russo, it was back in 1991, early on in both of their careers.  If you only dreamed about what it really was like in the 80's…this is the real thing and if you lived them, it's going to bring a flood of memories.  Susanne says that she has worn every piece in Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch. The impulse behind the exhibition began over a dinner with FIT Museum curator, Valerie Steele. The two were chatting and the late night finished at Susanne's apartment at the Chelsea Hotel with both Susanne and Valerie plunging through the archives of her wardrobe. Valerie got exicted, Susanne was determined to make this happen and as luck would have it there was a cancellation of a show leaving an opening in the museum's schedule and with a tap of a magic wand it all became a reality, quite organically.

Susanne was one of the first people to order a corset from our dear friend Mr. Pearl and she introduced Mr. Pearl  to Thierry Mugler and that was what kicked off his iconic career. When you walk into the main room you will find his corsets on a platter that keeps turning. I did not see it in action but I was told that was what was set to happen. In edition to Mr. Pearl you will find creations by:  Thierry Mugler, Leigh Bowery, Vivienne Westwood, Pam Hogg, Alexander McQueen, Abel Villareal, Zaldy, HBA, Rick Owens, Norma Kamali and Nicola Formichetti, among others.  Susanne wants you to be inspired and frankly I don't know how you could visit the exhibition and not be.

There is a catalogue, you can visit the FIT link listed below for more details.

This weekend I will post the fly on the wall video by Miguel Villalobos and you can hear Valerie and Susanne take you through the exhibition and well, you are on the list.

More later,


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.