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Folk Couture Benefit Gala
Wednesday October 16, 2013
Tribeca Rooftop

Written by Wendy R Williams
Photo Credit: Credit: Patrick McMullan Company

Opposite Photo: Betsey Johnson and Selig Sacks

On Wednesday October 16, 2013, The American Folk Art Museum honored the marriage of folk art and fashion at their annual gala which celebrated the upcoming Museum exhibit "Folk Couture: Fashion and Folk Art" (January 21 through April 23, 2014). Thirteen fashion designers were invited to create an ensemble based on an artwork: John Bartlett, Michael Bastian, Chadwick Bell, Creatures of the Wind (Christopher Peters and Shane Gabier), Gary Graham, Catherine Malandrino, Bibhu Mohapatra, NotEqual (Fabio Costa), Ronaldus Shamask, threeASFOUR (Gabi Asfour, Angela Donhauser, Adi Gil), Koos van den Akker, Yeohlee (Yeohlee Teng), Jean Yu.

Lucy Sykes, Dr. Valerie Steele, Yaz Hernandez, Laura Parsons and Tim Gunn

The dapper and dashing Tim Gunn hosted the event which honored Dr. Valerie Steele, Director and Chief Curator of the Museum at FIT & Lucy Sykes, Fashion Consultant, Rent the Runway, and Brand Ambassador.

Benefit chairs were Yaz Hernández and Laura Parsons. Gala Guests included:Berry Bloomingdale, Hayley Bloomingdale, Amy Fine Collins, Dr. Maria Ann Connelli, Francisco Costa, Louise Hirschfield Cullman and Lewis B. Cullman, Jane Bloomingdale de Cisneros, Simon Doonan, Nancy Druckman, Valentino Garavani, the Honorable Daphne Guinness, Betsey Johnson, Penny and Allan Katz, Steven Kolb, Coco and Arie Kopelman, Phyllis Kossoff, Jerry Lauren, Ida Liu, The Honorable Iris Love, Jonelle Procope, Laudomia Pucci, Peter and Elisa Rapaport, Peter G. Scotese, André Leon Talley, Diana L. Taylor, Judy Francis Zankel, and others.

Here is a description of the exhibition from the American Folk Art Museum website: "This exhibition will explore the polemical yet fascinating ways in which fashion engages with art. Conceived as an encounter between two worlds of creative endeavor, “Folk Couture” will feature the work of thirteen established and emerging designers who will create an original ensemble based on a selection of paintings, sculptures, photographs, quilts, and furniture chosen from the museum’s outstanding collection. The designers have selected approximately thirty artworks, drawn from every time period and in every medium considered by the museum, not only for their potential fashionability and capacity to inspire new styles of clothing but also for their background stories that inject powerful notes of intimacy and authenticity. The original couture and the works of art from the museum's collection will be exhibited together in juxtapositions that promise to be both stunning and provocative."

Dr. Valerie Steele, Francisco Costas and Dame Daphne Guinness


Richard Parsons and Yaz Hernandez

Daphne Guinness and Laudomia Pucci Angel Sanchez and Amy Fine Collins
Jean Shafiroff Catherine Malandrino












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