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Hollywood costumes to go on display at Victoria & Albert Museum

Judy Garland's costume from The Wizard of Oz will be on display at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Picture:  MGM/The Kobal Collection Judy Garland's costume from The Wizard of Oz will be on display at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Picture: MGM/The Kobal Collection

Wednesday, October 10, 2012
12:39 PM

Iconic costumes from films including The Wizard of Oz, Gone With the Wind and Breakfast at Tiffany’s will go on display this month at the Victoria & Albert Museum.

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Keira Knightley is seen with the dress she wore in the film Anna Karenina,  which goes on display in the Hollywood Costume exhibition at the V&A. Picture: Ian West/PA WireKeira Knightley is seen with the dress she wore in the film Anna Karenina, which goes on display in the Hollywood Costume exhibition at the V&A. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

Hollywood Costume will gather together more than 100 of the most iconic costumes designed for unforgettable cinema characters over a century of film-making.

Among the costumes on show will be Dorothy’s blue and white gingham pinafore dress designed by Adrian from The Wizard of Oz from 1939, Scarlett O’Hara’s green ‘curtain’ dress designed by Walter Plunkett for Gone with the Wind from 1939, and the ‘little black dress’ designed by Hubert De Givenchy for Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s from 1961.

Costumes from more recent Hollywood releases, including Consolata Boyle’s clothing for Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady and Keira Knightley’s costumes from Anna Karenina, will also be on display.

Hollywood Costume will explore the central role of costume design as an essential tool of cinema storytelling, and will also examine the changing social and technological context in which costume designers have worked over the last century.

John Travolta's costume from Saturday Night Fever will be on display at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Picture: © 2012 by Paramount PicturesJohn Travolta's costume from Saturday Night Fever will be on display at the Victoria & Albert Museum. Picture: © 2012 by Paramount Pictures

The exhibition will be split into three “acts”. Act One, Deconstruction, will introduce the role of the costume designer in cinema, explore the link between clothing and identity and look at how designers create the unique individuals in the script whether for modern, period or fantasy films.

Act Two, Dialogue, will examine the intimate creative collaboration among great filmmakers, actors, and costume designers.

Using archival film footage as well as specially-commissioned interviews, Dialogue will explore four key director/designer pairings: Alfred Hitchcock and Edith Head, Tim Burton and Colleen Atwood, Martin Scorsese and Sandy Powell, and Mike Nichols and Ann Roth.

Act Three, Finale, will present the best known costumes in cinema history in a spectacle of Hollywood heroes and femme fatales.

Hollywood Costume, sponsored by Harry Winston, is on from October 20 to January 27.

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