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Rodarte Fra Angelico Celebration at LACMA

A Triple Celebration for LACMA’s Rodarte: Fra Angelico Collection


The Los Angeles County Museum of Art hosted three events Jan. 18 to celebrate the museum’s new acquisition, RODARTE: Fra Angelico Collection, which has been added to the museum’s Costume and Textiles Department’s permanent holdings. The collection is a promised gift to the museum by Kate and Laura Mulleavy, designers of the acclaimed Rodarte line of fashions, together with Maria Arena Bell, Susan Casden, Eva Chow, Allison Sarofim, Karyn Silver, Christine Suppes, Lizzie Tisch, Dasha Zhukova and the DNA Boutique.

For starters, LACMA director and CEO Michael Govan and the Mulleavy sisters joined the exhibition’s donors and other LACMA VIPs for a champagne reception before viewing the gowns against a backdrop of LACMA’s Italian Renaissance artworks. Also among those enjoying the view were artists John Baldessari, Catherine Opie and Elliot Hundley; exhibition curators Sharon Takeda and Kaye Spilker; Diane Keaton, Viveca Paulin-Ferrell, Lisa Eisner, Roman Alonso, Katherine Ross and Jane Ross.

Next came a talk between Govan and the Mulleavy sisters, presented by LACMA’s Costume Council as part of the museum’s ongoing Director’s Series. At the sold-out event, the Mulleavys discussed the Renaissance artist Fra Angelico, who inspired their gowns. They also talked of the influence of art, history, film and literature on Rodarte designs since the company’s beginnings in 2005.

To provide a fitting end to the celebration, the Costume Council hosted an after-party for its membership, exhibition donors and others, under Tony Smith’s sculpture, “Smoke,” in LACMA’s Ahmanson Building. Included in the crowd were among others, Costume Council chair Carolyn Wagner, immediate past chair Joni Smith and Elizabeth Matthews, Bobbe Bramson, Robin Blake, Liza-Mae Carlin and Cheryl Van Tassel.

The Costume Council, the largest of the museum’s ten Art Councils, helps to expand public awareness of fashion, design, costume and textiles as art through events, such as curator-led tours of special exhibitions, visits to designer studios, lectures, film premieres, book-signings with prominent authors and behind-the-scenes exhibition previews. The council also raises funds for acquisitions to LACMA’s Costume and Textile Department through event ticket sales, membership dues and other donations by its membership.

The gowns will remain on view at LACMA’s Italian Renaissance gallery for the next few days, closing on Feb. 5.

Photos from top, artist John Baldessari with the Rodarte design team: Laura Mulleavy, left, and Kate Mulleavy at the Rodarte Fra Angelico Celebration at LACMA ; actress Diane Keaton and LACMA director and CEO Michael Govan at the Rodarte Fra Angelico Celebration at LACMA ; artist Catherine Opie at the LACMA celebration (photos: Stefanie Keenan). 

All photos courtesy of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.



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Rodarte Fra Angelico Celebration at LACMA

Published Feb. 1, 2012 – Society News LA