In celebration of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) 50th anniversary, The Museum at FIT hosts Impact: 50 Years of the CFDA. The exhibit honors its more than 400 members, which consists of America’s foremost womenswear, menswear, jewelry and accessories designers. There are approximately 100 garments and accessories presented that are thought to be the most impactful of the last five decades.
Founded in 1962 by publicist Eleanor Lambert and 20 leading American fashion designers of the era, the CFDA is currently led by designer Diane von Furstenberg. The organization has set forth to promote fashion design in the United States and helped create a platform to recognize the individual creative talent in the label dominated industry.
In addition to supporting talent, the CFDA also supports the fashion industry in other ways. For instance, its collaboration with Vogue magazine titled, 7th on Sale, is a yearly sample sale to benefit New York City AIDS Fund; and its partnership with eBay, You Can’t Fake Fashion takes a stand against counterfeiting.
American designers have always had impact on how people dress…In honor of that creativity and in celebration of the CFDA’s 50th anniversary, we are proud to present, in partnership with The Museum at FIT, an exhibit that represents the tremendous work of our members for the last five decades.
-Diane von Furstenberg
Among the designers featured in the exhibition include Geoffrey Beene, Bill Blass, Thom Browne, Tom Ford, Diane von Furstenberg, James Galanos, Marc Jacobs, Norma Kamali, Donna Karan, Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Traina-Norell, Oscar de la Renta, Proenza Schouler and Isabel Toledo, to name a few.
The exhibit is separated into two rooms in the lower level of the museum, which clearly delineates a contrast in format. A dimly lit entrance focuses on accessories and technology. From hats, purses to iPads, the history of the CFDA is presented with an interactive timeline, slideshow and A-Z designer directory.
In the main room, which is more gallery-like in feel, is organized thematically to showcase the broad range of American creativity. With a floor to ceiling display of the top looks of our time. The outfitted mannequins are installed in a grid-like array of functional sportswear, couture-like evening wear to simple dresses. Also on view is the embroidered silk dress worn by Michelle Obama on election night 2008 from Narciso Rodriguez’s Spring 2009 collection.
The book IMPACT: 50 Years of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, was also published for the organization’s anniversary.
The Museum at FIT presents a book signing opportunity and a lecture series titled, The CFDA at 50: The Presidents Speak, that is paired with the exhibit. Tomorrow, 4/10, and next Monday, 4/16, will be the final two talks featuring Stan Herman, former CFDA president of 16-years, and Oscar de la Renta, who has held the title of president twice in his career.
Impact: 50 Years of the CFDA
February 10—April 17, 2012
The Museum at FIT
Seventh Avenue & W. 27th Street
New York City