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Oscar de la Renta’s career, influence remembered at retrospective

March 24, 2016

Oscar de la Renta Oscar de la Renta


U.S. fashion designer Oscar de la Renta is the subject of a new retrospective exhibit that traces his career from his formative years to becoming one of the most revered talents of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Mr. de la Renta, who passed away at 82 in 2014 after a battle with cancer, is known for crafting the dresses worn by numerous first ladies and celebrities. During several decades as a designer, Mr. de la Renta charmed the world with color and extravagance, and up until the end of his life the designer sustained his brand and influenced the fashion industry (see story).

Remembering Oscar de la Renta
“Oscar de la Renta: The Retrospective” opened March 12 at the de Young, Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco.

Told through more than 130 ensembles, The Retrospective pays tribute to Mr. de la Renta’s career. Using his designs, the exhibit “celebrate[s] the best in us -- beauty, optimism and confidence.”

Visitors will trace Mr. de la Renta’s career beginnings in Spain in the 1950s, his formative years spent working in the industry’s most iconic ateliers and his rise as one of the most influential and celebrated personalities of the 20th and 21st centuries.

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Oscar de la Renta

Presented in collaboration with the house of de la Renta and the late designer’s family, more than 130 pieces featured are organized into several thematic sections, including Spanish, Eastern, Russian and garden influences, as well as daywear, ball gowns and red carpet dressings.

The exhibit was curated by Andre Leon Talley, the former American editor at large for Vogue magazine. As a personal friend of Mr. de la Renta, Mr. Talley’s involvement will offer guests an authentic interpretation of the designer’s career and influence.