Events & Exhibitions / Fondazione Torino Musei

Palazzo Madama

GIANFRANCO FERRE'. Under another light: Jewels and Ornament

October 12, 2017 - February 19, 2018

October 12, 2017 to February 19, 2018

Palazzo Madama, Piazza Castello, Turin
Wednesday October 11, 2017: Press conference 11.00am; Exhibition opening (invitation required) 6.30pm

From October 12, 2017, to February 19, 2018, the stately Hall of the Senate of Palazzo Madama in Turin will set the stage for the exhibition Gianfranco Ferré. Under Another Light: Jewels and Ornaments.
Organized and produced jointly by the Gianfranco Ferré Foundation and the Turin Museums Foundation, the exhibition will present a world premiere of 200 jewel objects that cut across the entire creative narrative of the famous Italian fashion designer.
Ferré always had a passion for ornamentation - a passion inseparably linked to his fashion collections and significantly determined by an enthusiastic and often innovative approach never inferior to the one he took in designing clothes. As Francesca Alfano Miglietti, curator of the exhibition, underscores: “Ferré constructs a free zone within a personal realm of reference, elaborating every object in the wake of a system of general classification of concepts that become objects. And so we see lustrous stones, enameled metals, smooth shells, painted woods, Murano glasses, retro ceramics, Swarovski crystals, as well as wood and leather and iron and copper and bronze, follow one another along an enchanted horizon of pins, necklaces, belts, rings, bracelets, bangles. For Ferré the ornament is not the ‘lesser child’ of a precious jewel, but a concept of eternity that must represent the immanence of the present.”The objects on display, created for fashion shows dating from 1980 to 2007, tell a story that is complementary to the clothing and relative accessories. Yet they are exhibited together with designs where it is precisely the jewel-material that invents and shapes the dress, becoming its substance and soul. In this case too, Gianfranco Ferré’s attention to materials is determinant, an essential part of his research.
The exhibition project - ideated by architect Franco Raggi - plays upon the contrast between the Hall of the Senate of Palazzo Madama, a place of immense architectural value, and the simple minimalist structures in iron and glass of the exhibition set-up. Thus highlighted is the imaginative beauty of the jewels designed by Ferré, which seem to soar in the semi-darkness. 

Gianfranco Ferré was born in Legnano on August 15, 1944. After graduating in Architecture in 1969 at the Politecnico of Milano, Ferré obtains a very first and significant success thanks to the creation of bijoux and accessories. It follows the basic lesson of India where he lives and works for long periods, the birth of his Women’s Prêt à Porter - in 1978 - and the foundation of the company which has his name. After the launch of men's clothing in 1982 and the creation of a wide range of collections and accessories upon licence, it comes the experience of the Gianfranco Ferré’s Alta Moda, between 1986 and 1989, whose collections are presented in Rome. Next, the prestigious appointment at the Maison Christian Dior, where Gianfranco Ferré is Creative Director from 1989 to 1996 for the Women’s lines. In the following years many other lines and several, important projects are developed. In March 2007, the designer is nominated Director of the Brera's Academy of Fine Arts. Gianfranco Ferré passes away on June 17 of the same year.