Rodarte recently unveiled their first couture collection at Pitti Immagine in Florence. The ten gowns were based on the frescoes painted by Fra Angelico in the monks cells in San Marco and Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s sculpture of The Ecstacy of St Theresa.
Understandably, I’m having a huge art history fangirl moment.
Rodarte are sticklers when it comes to detail, so setting and placement are very important, but I also think that the setting and placement of their Renaissance influences are important when it comes to interpreting their pieces (and these dresses are as close to art as clothing can be, so they beg a bit of analysis).
Even though Fra Angelico’s murals were painted for monk’s cells, occupants of these cells included members of the Medici family, who were the most powerful family in Florence and noted patrons of the arts. Cosimo de Medici would use the cells for some incredibly expensive alone time.
Bernini’s sculpture is one of the most controversial art pieces of the Renaissance, with what can be interpreted as extremely sexual overtones. Take a look at Teresa’s face. Is it intentional or just out modern smutty minds. The sculpture is flanked by two balconies of realistically-rendered observers, who are very interested in the action going on down below. In both artworks, there is an element of being watched and of patronage, the rich paying out for art. That’s the connecting line between couture and art – both are intricately one-offs made to detailed specifications for rich clients
Here are some of the gowns. I love the belts and breastplates – They’re SOOOOOO Bernini (said in the manner of Kim Kardashian).
Rodarte photos from Autumn de Wilde