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Prêt-à-Papier or Couture Paper: The Exquisite Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave

Posted: 07/20/2012 3:23 pm

For over 15 years, inspired by the rich history of fashion represented in European paintings, famous costumes in museum collections and haute couture designs, the Belgian artist Isabelle de Borchgrave has turned her passion for painting toward the recreation of elaborate costumes -- crumpling, pleating, painting and sculpting the surface of ordinary paper -- to achieve the effect of textiles and create the illusion of haute couture.

A selection of iconic dresses reinterpreted in trompe l'oeil paper masterpieces is presented in the exhibition Prêt-à-Papier: The Exquisite Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave, currently on view for the first time at Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens in Washington, DC. More than 25 of de Borchgrave's quintessential interpretations of historical costumes and haute couture dresses, with six new pieces made for this exhibition -- including one commissioned solely for Hillwood -- will be on display.

From the lavish apparel of the Russian imperial family and 18th century French aristocracy to turn-of-the-century fashion designers Mariano Fortuny and Charles Frederick Worth, discover the extraordinary paper sculptures of Isabelle de Borchgrave.

Prêt-à-Papier: The Exquisite Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave

Installation view





  Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



Pompadour Dress

 Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



Pink Dress, costume realized at the occasion of the installation of the Marie Antoinette Bathroom at the Palace of Versailles. Inspired by ca. 1776 engraving in the collection of the Musée du Louvre, Paris

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 Ballerine, Black with Red Ribbons

Photo © Pauline de Borchgrave

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 Callot Soeurs Dress based on c. 1908 design

Photo © Andreas von Einsiedel

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 Fortuny Light Green Dress

Photo © Alain Speltdoorn

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave




Fortuny Orange Dress, after late 19th century design


Photo © Jean-Pierre Gabriel




Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 Lanvin Dress based on 1924 period in spirit of Chinese prints and lacquers. painted to resemble diamanté and bead embroidery

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave




Peter the Great dress based on c. 1730 design


Photo © Andreas von Einsiedel




Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave



 French 18th Century dress à la Polonaise. The patterns come from a costume at the Kyoto Costume Institute and the shape of the dress is from an etching by Antoine-Jean Ducios, c.1760, based on a painting by Augustin de Saint-Aubin

Photo © Alain Speltdoorn

Courtesy Hillwood Estate, Museums and Gardens


© Créations Isabelle de Borchgrave




Redfern Dress based on 1924 Redfern ofLondon dress









Prêt-à-Papier: The Exquisite Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave


June 16 - December 30, 2012













Via Trouvaillesdujour

 

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