The Genteel
February 25, 2021


Will Alexander Wang be heading up Balenciaga? Source:

The Genteel editors on what we're seeing, doing, reading and anticipating for the week ahead.


NEW YORK Designing The Second Skin: Giorgio Di Sant'Angelo 1971-1991 - Exhibition. Parsons presents the first New York exhibition of the work of designer Giorgio di Sant'Angelo, an innovative Italian-born American designer from the 1960s through 1980s who explored the ways in which garments truly become the wearer's second skin. Playing with texture, transparency and newly discovered fabric technology, Sant'Angelo examined the relationship between exposure and concealment. A highlight from the exhibition is a nude sequined jumpsuit worn by Naomi Campbell and featured in an editorial shoot for Harper's Bazaar in 1991. Parsons (December 4-14).

The Master of the Blue Jeans.

NEW YORK Fashion and Technology. This exhibition explores the impact of emerging technologies on the nature of fashion design and production over the past 250 years. It begins with objects created during the Industrial Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries, when innovations in textile manufacturing revolutionised the fashion industry. These innovations included the introduction of the Spinning Jenny, the Jacquard loom and the sewing machine. Museum at FIT (December 4, 2012-May 8, 2013).

When it comes to wearable technology, nothing has stuck since the watch. But as our dependency on technology increases with each passing software update, appealing and "intelligent" attire might just be seasons away, says Erin Ridley

LONDON - Unexpected Pleasures: The Art and Design of Contemporary Jewellery. Bringing together almost 200 objects from around the world, Unexpected Pleasures celebrates the work of contemporary jewellers who have challenged the conventions of jewellery design. Curated by jewellery designer and maker Dr. Susan Cohn, the exhibition offers a survey of contemporary jewellery presented through a number of themes: Worn Out - celebrating the experience of wearing jewellery; Linking Links - looking at the ways in which meaning and narratives are expressed in jewellery; and A Fine Line - offering insights into the origins of contemporary jewellery today, highlighting key instigators of the contemporary jewellery movement. Design Museum (December 5, 2012-March 3, 2013).

After a flop at Tiffany & Co., Irene Kim searches out distinctive jewellery gift ideas for the women in your life - The Genteel Gift Guide: Jewellery (Outside The Little Blue Box).

THE HAGUE - Fabulous Fifties - Fabulous Fashion. This exhibition explores a wide range of original '50s attire, reflecting on a time full of optimism and change in a visual narrative. The exhibition presents various contrasting styles of the era such as dazzling haute couture outfits by Dior and Balenciaga reminiscent of Grace Kelly, along side James Dean's iconic teenage rebel style. Gemeente Museum (until February 3, 2013).

UTRECHT - Blue Jeans, from 17th Century to Present Day. The exhibition is divided into a number of themes showing the experimental and creative side of jeans: from their origin as work wear in the 17th century, to high fashion in the 20th century, to modern-day jeans. Special attention is reserved for national and international subcultures, in which the jean is a product for the masses that expresses uniformity, but at the same time a most personal garment that reflects individuality.
 The exhibition also looks at the DNA of jeans: the materials, buttons, labels and their typical indigo blue colour. The highly polluting production process and current innovative sustainable alternatives, such as "zero water waste" and "ozone" treatments, are also part of the exhibition. Centraal Museum (until March 10, 2013).

Deeply embedded in Western culture, denim just keeps on giving. A textile initially worn by farmers, miners and fishermen, denim is now the foundation of every (wo)man's closet. Alina Kulesh pays homage to fashion's greatest superhero: the jean.

Louis Vuitton: The Birth of Modern Luxury
(Updated Edition)
is released today.

MILAN - Kama Sex and Design. Named after the Hindu God of sexual pleasure, human love and desire, this exhibition explores the relationship between eros and design. From Etruscan vases to Roman phallic amulets, from drawings by Piero Fornasetti to pictures by Carlo Mollino and Ettore Sottsass, from Mae West Sofa by Salvador Dalí to the amazing and provocative The Great Wall of Vagina by Jamie McCartney, comprising plaster casts taken from the genitals of 400 different women. To widen the scope of the exhibition, eight international designers - Andrea Branzi, Nacho Carbonell, Nigel Coates, Matali Crasset, Lapo Lani, Nendo, Italo Rota and Betony Vernon - deal with the theme and present their personal interpretation with new site-specific installations. Triennale di Milano (December 5, 2012-March 10, 2013). 

DAR ES SALAAM Swahili Fashion Week 2012. Golden Tulip Dar es Salaam (December 6-8).


Louis Vuitton: The Birth of Modern Luxury Updated Edition (Abrams). The first in-depth portrait of one of the world's best-known luxury brands, this elegant volume traces the remarkable history of the House of Vuitton, which has been making practical but stylish luggage, handbags and accessories for more than 150 years. Written with full access to the company's archives, the book itself demonstrates Louis Vuitton's passion for fine design in a stunning array of archival art, historical images, product designs and sketches, and cutting-edge advertising. (Released today.)


The Economist reviews Grace Coddington's new memoir, while in its sister publication, Intelligent Life, Julie Kavanagh, Coddington's assistant in the 1970s and friend ever since, captures her style, then and now.

T Magazine - "Some shoes are obviously sexy...And then there are loafers." A brief history of fashion's favourite flat

Wired - "It isn't a secret that Net-a-Porter will be publishing a major fashion magazine within the next 12 months or so." 

BBC News - Do models need more rights? Fashion modelling has a dark underbelly, with exploitation and unfairness rife, writes American model Sara Ziff.

Runway Blog (New York Times) - "Alexander Wang appears to be the leading candidate to succeed the star designer Nicolas Ghesquiere, and an announcement of his appointment could be made as early as next week, a Paris source with knowledge of the discussions said on Wednesday night."



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