Friday, February 24, 2012
Rudy Gernreich...topless swimsuit creator's dazzling exhibit "The Total Look"! @ MOCA!
If you resided in West Hollywood a couple of decades ago, and were inclined to pop into the Posh Bagel now-and-then for a bite to eat (just down from the old Mayfair Market) - chances are - you might cross paths with the legendary fashion designer Rudy Gernreich (pictured).
Mr. Gernreich was a high-profile fashionista (and clothes-horse) in these parts (his studio was on Santa Monica Boulevard just shy of La Cienega) known for his many bold (fanciful) innovations in the thread trade.
For example, the diminutive artist - usually attired in chic futuristic-looking black slacks and tight t's (which were sparked up with understated tasteful accessories such as fine jewellry) - introduced the topless bathing suit in 1964 (and the world was never the same after that).
Tattler readers may recall that I penned a post on Mr. Gernreich in recent years, and that the gifted visionary was a casual friend who attempted to boost my own modelling career by placing a persuasive call to super agent Nina Blanchard.
Oh "she" of Merv Griffin fame!
Gernreich was part of a motley (dynamic) trio which included his muse - top model - Peggy Moffitt and her late husband (a photographer) William Claxton.
Today, I was quite thrilled to receive a press release which announced that the Museum of Contemporary Art will be presenting a body of Gernreich's work - appropriately titled - "The Total Look" - at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood.
The much-anticipated display will feature pieces from Ms. Moffitt's collection, in addition to, films and photographs by Claxton (wherein the model is captured in candid moments in front of his insightful penetrating lens).
Gernreich's work incorporated influences from the pop, minimal, and performance art scenes.
The multi-talented designer created the "unisex" look, often used leotards and tights before they were commonly splashed forward into the mainstream by other designers, and was keen on "see through" wardrobe outfits.
With obvious tongue-in-check, he whipped up the "No Bra" bra one fine day.
In Gernreich's mischievous hands, lowly street fashions suddenly became high brow!
Claxton first began to photograph Gernreich's offerings in 1957 and documented all the collections from 1962 onward.
A film - "Basic Black: William Claxton w/Peggy Moffitt" - will be featured during the run of the exhibition Sunday February 26th through May 20th.
See 'ya there!