40 Years of Fab: See Jean Paul Gaultier's First Major Retrospective

Jean Paul Gaultier
Photo: Patrice Stable/Jean Paul Gaultier

Not everyone can carry off a statement piece by Jean Paul Gaultier. It takes a certain swagger to wear a ribbed top with conical bra (see: the famous corset JPG made for Madonna to wear on her “Blond Ambition” tour) or red toreador pants embellished with beading. But regardless of your fashion taste, surely you can appreciate the designer's flashy bravado.

Now the subject of the designer's first major retrospective, called “From The Sidewalk to the Catwalk”on view at London’s Barbican arts and learning center until Aug. 25, Gaultier's 4o-plus years in the industry is on full display. Of the 165 couture and ready-to-wear creations, expect to be wowed by by some iconic pieces worn by the Material Girl, of course, as well as stage costumes made for effervescent Kylie Minogue. Film and art buffs, meanwhile, may be pleasantly surprised by Gaultier's working relationship with Pedro Almodóvar and other collaborations with the likes of Andy Warhol and Cindy Sherman. Perhaps, the exhibit is just the excuse for a summer hop across the pond!

Gaultier may be a fashion veteran, but he's still livening up Paris Couture Week each season. See his most recent butterfly-dabbled haute couture take flight!

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