Oscar de la Renta: Would Annette Wear It?

Oscar de la Renta at the de Young
Paula Carano in a gown by Oscar de la Renta, also featured in Oscar de la Renta: The Retrospective at the de Young Museum, San Francisco


Arguably, the most special gowns in Oscar de la Renta: The Retrospective at the de Young Museum through May 30, 2016, are those that belonged to Annette de la Renta. Annette’s gowns and evening ensembles were the only pieces Oscar de la Renta made just once. According to lifelong friend and exhibition curator Andre Leon Talley, when Oscar created anything new, the first question he asked himself was, “Would Annette wear it?”

The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco’s commitment to fashion as art is evident in the retrospective. The exhibition celebrates the life and career of one of fashion’s most influential 20th and 21st century designers. Organized in close collaboration with the House of Oscar de la Renta and the designer’s family, and curated by André Leon Talley, former American editor-at-large for Vogue.

Included are more than 120 ensembles produced over five decades. Ten looks from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, ten from Kent State Museum, ensembles from the Fashion Institute of Technology, Diana Vreeland, de la Renta’s personal collection, clients clothes, and the Fine Arts Museums’ costume collection.

Viewers will see gowns worn by locals, dignitaries and celebrities including Paula Carano, Dede Wilsey, Cathy MacNaughton, former First Lady Laura Bush, Sarah Jessica Parker, Taylor Swift, Nicki Minaj, Penélope Cruz and Rihanna, just to name drop a few.

Scenes from the Oscar de la Renta exhibition opening and benefit dinner on March 9, 2016:

Photos by Drew Altizer Photography

Oscar de la Renta: The Retrospective at the de Young Museum March 12 – May 30, 2016

Presenting Sponsors: Cynthia Fry Gunn and John A. Gunn
Director’s Circle: Diane B. Wilsey
Curator’s Circle: Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund, The Diana Dollar Knowles Foundation, Marissa Mayer and Zachary Bogue, Yurie and Carl Pascarella
Benefactor’s Circle: Paula and Bandel Carano, Stephanie and Jim Marver, Neiman Marcus, Jennifer and Steven Walske
Patron’s Circle: The Fairmont San Francisco, Mrs. Carole McNeil, Mrs. Komal Shah and Mr. Gaurav Garg, Mary Beth and David Shimmon, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph O. Tobin II

Click here for more stylish scenes from the Oscar de la Renta Gala Dinner at the de Young.

— Related: Red Carpet Bay Area coverage of fashion exhibitions at the Fine Arts Museums