Art, design, and pop culture merge in the glittering display that is 

The Fashion World of 

Jean Paul Gaultier

: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk

. After traveling from Canada to Texas to California, the exhibition on famed French designer Jean Paul Gaultier has finally landed in the Brooklyn Museum. The life and designs of the fashion icon are distributed across a sprawling, seven-part exhibit, on display until February 23 2014.

Over 140 ensembles are displayed amongst glossy fashion photography and framed polaroids, blurring the line between fine art and haute couture. Gaultier's life and career are presented as a timeline at the entrance of the exhibit, coming to life as you wander from room to room. Some garments, including a few of Gaultier's very first pieces, are modeled by projector-animated mannequins - kind of cool, kind of creepy.


Alix Malka (French). Untitled, n.d. Digital photo, 47 x 74½ in. (119.6 x 189.6 cm). “La Mariée” wedding gown from Jean Paul Gaultier’s “Mermaids” spring-summer haute couture collection of 2008. Latex bodysuit with golden scales; cone bra with shells; long, form-fitting sequined alpaca skirt with latex mermaid’s tail. ©Alix Malka

The exhibit is extensive and thorough, with elaborate setups and staging that compliment each of the seven themes. Video screens play excerpts from films and runway presentations; perfumes, sketches, and personal objects remind viewers of the depth and progression of Gaultier's work.

Gaultier's undoubtable presence in pop culture is cemented in his countless custom designs and collaborations with modern day music icons. Garments and costumes for stars like Madonna (of course!) and Beyonce are on display, and an entire section is devoted to Gaultier's famous lingerie-inspired aesthetic.

The exhibit is well-worth the line, and tickets grant you admission to the rest of the museum, which houses the city's second-largest collection of art.


Paolo Roversi (Italian, b. 1947). Tanel Bedrossiantz, 1992. Digital print, 15 x 12 in. (38.3 x 30.8 cm). Jean Paul Gaultier’s “Barbès” women’s ready-to-wear fall-winter collection of 1984–85. © Paolo Roversi

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk is organized by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, in collaboration with Maison Jean Paul Gaultier, Paris. The exhibition is curated by Thierry-Maxime Loriot of the MMFA. The Brooklyn presentation is coordinated by Lisa Small, Curator of Exhibitions, Brooklyn Museum.

Nu-Mode´ Coverage Alexandra Stevens

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier

Video Directed by Stéphane Sednaoui