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ELIO BERHANYER, 50 FASHIONABLE YEARS (Museum of the Suit. On December 4 - February 22)
For: Julia Sáez-Angulo
E. Berhanyer / 50 fashionable years / Foto:David Serrano
E. Berhanyer / 50 fashionable years / Foto:David Serrano
E. Berhanyer / Museum of the Suit / Foto:Bernardo Peace
E. Berhanyer / Museum of the Suit / Foto:Bernardo Peace
E. Berhanyer / Museum of the Suit / Foto:Bernardo Peace
E. Berhanyer / Museum of the Suit / Foto:David Serrano
E. Berhanyer / Museum of the Suit / Foto:David Serrano
It is one of the alone figures of the fashionable design in Spain and his suits have taken them from the actress Ava Gardner or Maria Fernanda Thomas of Carranza, passing for Gem Piñana, the lady of Huarte, one of his most faithful clients or Charo Montarco, model and muse during a long period. But, on all of them, the Queen Mrs Sofía, who has transferred the treasures of his closets for this event. The Museum of the Suit preserves numerous pieces acquired or transferred by diverse donors. The women most emphasized from the Spanish society showed the suits of Elio Berhanyer of beautiful and architectural cut, much in the line "constructivista" of the French couturiers André Courreges and Pierre Cardin, all of them Balenciaga admirers.
Elio Berhanyer (Cordova, 1929) has an intense emotional biography, that of a man done to himself from the humblest origins. A creator full of imagination, firmness and will, which there was deserving this big retrospective exhibition of a hundred of suits in the Museum of the Suit in Madrid. The designer has collaborated closely in the museum with donations and a wide parade of wedding dresses in his staircases.

The geometric lines and the solid structures give form to his day suits, and the neoclassic lines and fragile structures for the night suits. The white person and black have been his favorite colors, although the scale is extended to more alive others, according to the inspiration in the folklore, popular suit or in the big works of the Prado Museum, always “approaching but without allowing to contaminate”, as he likes saying.

The exhibition splits into three areas: The Island of the Pheasants; Then and Now, and 50 fashionable Years. The first capture as inspiration a carpet of Charles Le Brun, before which it had a creative "revelation" before that retinue of the meeting of Luis XIV, King of France and of Navarre and of Felipe IV Rey of Spain in 1660 to ratify a peace with a wedding. The French luxury and the sober elegance of the Spanish fashion were going to yield fruits continued in his designs.

Then and Now it includes sixteen suits belonging to women emphasized in the last five decades that showed his garments: that the queen Mrs Sofía showed the day of the First Communion of infanta Mrs Cristina; the one that Analía Gadé showed in the movie Black Story; the tunic that Victoria Vera showed in the work: Why do you run Ulises? or the uniform of Iberia of the stewardess Nieves Barber. There is offered also a selection of the different uniforms of air company.

50 years of Fashion it does a chronological trip of some of the models most typical or representative of Elio Berhanyer, examples in the high fashion and in the pret-a-porter. Without forgetting the complements that also he has designed like jewels, perfumes or hairdos. The style Elio Berhanyer always looked for the modern thing – sometimes the daring and futurist thing - for the day and the timeless thing for the night, with textiles and quality dressmaking for both moments of the day. Demanding designer, has always looked for the perfection. 

Illustrious loaners:  Between the personages who have given suits for this exhibition there are Aurora Bautista, Natalia Figueroa, Aline Griffith, countess of Romanones, Pilar Ibáñez-Martín, Mercedes Maier, Marita March, Maria Elizabeth Miralles de Fernández of Córdova, Charo Palacios, countess of Montarco, Mercedes Picón y Agero, marchioness of Seoane and Maria Zurita Borbón.

The exhibition is provided with an audio-visual one of half an hour of duration, in which a conversation of the designer is expressed with the commissioner, on the whole trajectory of the creator of the fashion. The same way a wide catalog has been published with the illustrations of the pieces and authors' wide texts like Antonio Gala, Lucina Lorente, Andrés Peláez, Josefina Figueras, Juan Manuel Bonet, Aline de Romanones and commissioner Pedro Mansilla.

Elio Berhanyer, dean of the designers in assets obtained the golden Medal to the beautiful Arts in 2002.



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