Legendary fashion designer, Valentino Garavani held a launch party to unveil his game changing Virtual Museum last night in Manhattan’s IAC Headquarters. The party drew plenty of famous fashionistas including Sarah Jessica Parker, Rachel Zoe, Claire Danes, and Olivia Palermo.
Opting against a traditional brick-and-mortar museum to immortalize his legacy, Valentino and his longtime partner, Giancarlo Giammetti, unveiled an interactive 3-D technology to present the fashion house’s archives spanning 50 years. The Valentino Garavani Virtual Museum is available through a downloadable desktop application that showcases nearly 100 fashion shows on video, 360-degree views of 5,000 dresses, and unique and intimate looks into Valentino’s world including original working sketches from the designer’s own hand, photographs of clothes, and celebrities who wore his clothing.
The application’s uses will prove to be vast, but the underlying idea is to open up the archives for interconnections and cross-references of Valentino’s designs. Students and historians can access this wealth of fashion knowledge with unprecedented ease. The digital nature of the museum give Valentino and Mr. Giammetti total creative control of the exhibition; unlike a classic museum there is no need for an external curator who might have interpreted the message differently than the duo. While the fashion legend is still reportedly in talks with the City of Rome about a classic museum, perhaps like the one Gucci opened in Florence, the digital space, as Giammetti pointed out, will remain an integral part of Valentino’s legacy because it can continue to evolve, integrate modern technology, utilize unlimited cyberspace and speak directly to Generation Y.