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Couture fashions at the Mint

If you have any doubts that clothing can be wearable works of art, then slip into the Mint Museum of Art's new exhibit, “The Art of Affluence: Couture and Luxury Fashions 1947-2007.” Mint Masterpiece Circle members and special guests were the first to view the magnificent collection during a grand opening reception June 26. Guests practically drooled over exquisite creations by Chanel, De La Renta, Dior, Givenchy, Saint Laurent, Valentino and Versace. Curator Charles Mo admitted there were two big challenges in putting together the exhibit: deciding what to display from the museum's massive costume collection (“We have more than 10,000 pieces – some dating back to the 18th century,” he said), and finding mannequins to fit the clothes on, since each item was specifically made for one individual (“In some cases we had to use a torso from one mannequin and arms from another”). The exhibit is on view through 2010. Details: www.mintmuseum.org.

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