Jean Paul Gaultier Leaves His Mark on Brooklyn from the Catwalk to the Sidewalk

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Jean Paul Gaultier arrived in Brooklyn, New York early last week to put the finishing touches on his acclaimed traversing exhibition, The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk.

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As the seventh venue to play host to Gaultier's more than 140 magnificent looks of haute couture and ready-to-wear ensembles, the Brooklyn Museum celebrated with a grand opening last Wednesday joined by Brooklyn Museum Director Arnold L. Lehman and model muses Farida Khelfa, Coco Rocha and Karlie Kloss. In addition, WSJ Editor-in-Chief, Kristina O'Neill, hosted a one-on-one interview with exhibition curator Thierry-Maxime Loriotn and Monsieur Gaultier this past Friday.

While the exhibition begins with JPG's signature breton stripe collection in a cerulean illuminated room, the provocative designer took it one step further by projecting moving faces on each of his mannequins. "I was inspired by a play I saw during my yearly trips to the theater festival in Avignon, France," the French designer told us in a personal interview. "I remember seeing rows of actors in a small, dark room and I was so surprised to realize they were not real at the end of the play. I thought it was incredible."

Starting with his premier designs from the 1970's, Gaultier's retrospect shows off his meticulous construction of cage corsets, leather-punk embellishments and most notably, his boudoir "cone bra" collection so famously worn by Madonna for her 1990's "Blond Ambition" tour. But the real star of the show is "Nana" – Gaultier's childhood teddy bear on whom he created his first cone bra inspired by his grandmother's brassiere.

Jean Paul Gaultier's exhibition offers close up, awe-inspiring insights guaranteed to heighten your senses and for the first time is offering works from his most recent collections along with stage costumes worn by Beyoncé. The exhibition is on display now at the Brooklyn Museum and runs through February 24, 2014. This is one you surely do not want to miss.

Photos courtesy of Nausheen Shah
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