2022 marks the 60th anniversary of the first Yves Saint Laurent collection under his name, as well as the 5th anniversary of the opening of the Musée Yves Saint Laurent Paris.
The exhibition, GOLD by Yves Saint Laurent, celebrates the occasion by examining the role that gold has played in the couturier’s work. Under the curatorship of Elsa Janssen, director of the museum since March 2022, in association with the museum’s curatorial team and with the artistic collaboration of Anna Klossowski*, the exhibition GOLD by Yves Saint Laurent presents gold through some forty haute couture and ready-to-wear dresses, selected accessories and objects, as well as display cases filled with jewelery, essential to the Yves Saint Laurent silhouette.
From the very first buttons adorning his pea coats to dresses that appear entirely fashioned from gold, no collection escaped the couturier’s “golden” touch. So many materials lent themselves to Saint Laurent’s mastery of the dazzling radiance of gold: brocade, lace, lamé, sequins, leather, embroidery–whether through fabric, jewelry or perfume, gold sparkles...
“ It is today’s black. I always enliven black with gold, through buttons, belts and chains. ”
“ An evening should glow; otherwise it’s a bit absurd. ”
Whether reflected in sun-filled memories of Oran and Marrakech, or on display with objects collected by Pierre Bergé and Yves Saint Laurent or accessories designed by Loulou de La Falaise, gold has always inspired the couturier’s œuvre. Yves Saint Laurent’s radiant character illuminates this chrono-thematic journey through a dazzling diversity of ornaments, sumptuous fabrics and exquisite materials.
From the jeweled dress designed for his autumn-winter 1966 collection and photographed by David Bailey, to the sequined dresses worn by Zizi Jeanmaire and Sylvie Vartan, the exhibition celebrates the empowerment of women, while channeling the Palace club years and that festive era.
To complement the creations of Yves Saint Laurent, the museum has invited the Belgian sculptor Johan Creten to exhibit five works that remind us of the extent to which gold has always inspired artists.