Daily Picture Show

Models As Muses

What do Twiggy, Richard Avedon and Justin Timberlake all have in common? They're all involved in an upcoming exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute.

  • Linda Evangelista in Love Collection, spring/summer 1991 advertising campaign for Dolce & Gabbana
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    Linda Evangelista in Love Collection, spring/summer 1991 advertising campaign for Dolce & Gabbana
    Steven Meisel/Art + Commerce
  • Models in Christian Dior, 1957
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    Models in Christian Dior, 1957
    Loomis Dean/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images
  • Models in dresses by Charles James, Vogue, 1948  Conde Nast Publications)
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    Models in dresses by Charles James, Vogue, 1948 Conde Nast Publications)
    Cecil Beaton, Courtesy of the Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby's (c
  • Naomi Campbell in Geoffrey Beene, Vogue, June 1990
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    Naomi Campbell in Geoffrey Beene, Vogue, June 1990
    Peter Lindbergh
  • Linda Evangelista in Guess and Virginia Vogue Italia, December 1998
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    Linda Evangelista in Guess and Virginia Vogue Italia, December 1998
    Peter Lindbergh
  • Twiggy in dress by Yves Saint Laurent, Vogue, March 15, 1967
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    Twiggy in dress by Yves Saint Laurent, Vogue, March 15, 1967
    Bert Stern/Courtesy Staley-Wise Gallery, New York
  • Veruschka in safari suit by Yves Saint Laurent, French Vogue, August, 1968
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    Veruschka in safari suit by Yves Saint Laurent, French Vogue, August, 1968
    Franco Rubartelli/Vogue France
  • Naomi Campbell (from left), Linda Evangelista, Tatjana Patitz, Christy Turlington and Cindy Crawford in tops by Giorgio di Sant' Angelo, British Vogue, 1990
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    Naomi Campbell (from left), Linda Evangelista, Tatjana Patitz, Christy Turlington and Cindy Crawford in tops by Giorgio di Sant' Angelo, British Vogue, 1990
    Peter Lindbergh
  • Cindy Crawford (from left), Tatjana Patitz, Helena Christensen, Linda Evangelista, Claudia Schiffer,  Naomi Campbell, Karen Mulder and Stephanie Seymour in Gianni Versace, Autumn/Winter 1991-92, Vogue, September 1991
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    Cindy Crawford (from left), Tatjana Patitz, Helena Christensen, Linda Evangelista, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Karen Mulder and Stephanie Seymour in Gianni Versace, Autumn/Winter 1991-92, Vogue, September 1991
    Peter Lindbergh
  • Jean Shrimpton in coat by London of Sloane Street, British Vogue, January 1964
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    Jean Shrimpton in coat by London of Sloane Street, British Vogue, January 1964
    David Bailey
  • Kate Moss in overal dress by Anna Molinari Blumarine, Harper's Bazaar, December 1994
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    Kate Moss in overal dress by Anna Molinari Blumarine, Harper's Bazaar, December 1994
    Peter Lindbergh

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The exhibit features fashion models from throughout the past century. But it's less about the clothes, and more about the distinctive women who have inspired designers, photographers and an entire culture. The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion reframes these lanky beauties as symbols of social evolution.

What models symbolize may be controversial, but they're symbolic nonetheless.
The tall, angular muses of the 1920s embody a deco departure from the cult of domesticity. Timeless post-World War II images by Richard Avedon and Irving Penn show the ascent of a more artistic form of fashion photography. Twiggy, the lanky, androgynous fashion icon of the 1960s, is the paragon of aesthetic rebellion. And 1980s supermodels such as Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington pave the way for fashion megastars like Kate Moss.

The exhibition runs from May 6 to Aug. 9. The chairman is designer Marc Jacobs, along with Kate Moss, Justin Timberlake and Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of American Vogue.

By Claire O'Neill

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