Monday, 12 April 2010

Bella Venezia--Palazzo Mocenigo

Ciao, tutti! I hope all is going well back in the Vassar bubble. I'm studying in Bologna this semester through Vassar's program. Unfortunately, travel and Internet problems have made it very hard to upload pictures and write blog posts, but all of my Internet problems have been fixed and I'll post more about la dolce vita soon.
Last week, I visited Palazzo Mocenigo, one of Italy's only historic costume museums. The palazzo also houses Italy's only Center of Textile Studies. It seems like the palazzo is more Center than museum, which I admit was a bit disappointing at first, but that's okay because the few clothes they had were beautiful. All of the dresses were from the 18th century, Venice's last hurrah. The first room had two children's robes (click pictures to enlarge):

The dress on the right was a fantastic green silk moire with white, green, and teel embroidery. Drool-worthy. Although you can't see it in this picture, the dress also has a Watteau back. In my costume history class, I learned that this type of dress was called a robe francaise, but European historians call it an adrienne.

I also have a thing for fabrics, so as you can imagine, this piece was orgasmic:
The palace itself was also quite beautiful: a Rococo interior to match the Rococo clothes.

In addition to the dresses, there were several rooms that had corsets and sleepwear on display. On the "man's" side of the house (dining room, study, and library), some men's clothes were on display but they were hard to photograph. The library had 200 years' worth of fashion books on display, some ranging from the obscure ("Lacemaking", 1769) to the well-known (L'Art e la Mode, a famous fashion magazine, from 1886).  What I wouldn't do to revise and update this beauty from an 1886 fashion plate:


In addition to these few rooms, one room was entirely covered with George Barbier prints. Barbier was famous for his fashion illustrations in all of the best Paris fashion magazines of the 1910s and 1920s. He documented all of the best Art Deco fashions, and the prints themselves are beautiful:

The Palazzo Mocenigo is a small museum, but nonetheless beautiful. If you have time to spare while visiting Venice, I highly recommend this museum.

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