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Bulgari Australia launches a major funding program for the NGV

PIERRE CARDIN, Paris (fashion house); Pierre CARDIN (designer)
Jacket and dress 1969
wool, acetate (lining)
(a) 68.0 cm (centre back) 59.0 cm (sleeve length) (jacket) (b) 93.0 cm (centre back) 38.0 cm (waist, flat) (dress)
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased with funds donated by Bulgari Australia Pty Ltd, 2012
2012.117.a-b

On Tuesday the 23rd of April Bulgari launched the Bulgari Funding Program – NGV International Fashion Acquisitions at a gala event held in the Great Hall at the National Gallery of Victoria.

Designed to fund the acquisitions of major works by leading international fashion designers specifically for the NGV, the partnership provides an extraordinary opportunity to increase the Gallery’s remarkable collection.

Julie Ann Morrison, Managing Director Bulgari UK and Australia said

“We are delighted to support the NGV in acquiring rare works by leading international fashion designers from the 1950s to the 1990s. This period was a very creative period in the history of Bulgari design when the third generation of the Bulgari family took over the company with a youthful exuberance which challenged traditional forms of jewellery design and making and transformed the very idea of what constituted fine jewellery -  so we feel a special affinity for this project.

We have contributed to the NGV Fashion and Textile collection since 2011 and we now welcome the opportunity to expand our collaboration through the launch of a program dedicated to supporting the collection of significant pieces from the world’s most acclaimed and innovative designers.

It is a pleasure for Bulgari to collaborate with the NGV on this exciting project which exemplifies the aesthetic and artistic values which we share.”

Director of the NGV, Tony Ellwood said that Bulgari has been a style leader throughout its 129-year history and the NGV was delighted to be supported by such an important design icon.

“Over the coming years, through the support of the Bulgari Funding Program – NGV International Fashion Acquisitions, the NGV will be conducting a world-wide search for exceptional examples of works by high fashion designers of the 1960s through to the contemporary.

“We will be focussing on key pieces by key designers. The acquisitions will later be revealed in various displays that are destined to reflect the glamorous, audacious, unconventional and ground-breaking spirit of this period,” said Mr Ellwood.

To launch the Bulgari Funding Program – NGV International Fashion Acquisitions, the NGV has acquired three major works by important French designers Pierre Cardin, Claude Montana and Thierry Mugler.

The 1969 work by Cardin, Jacket and mini dress ensemble (pictured), expresses all the optimism of the 1960s and the futuristic hopes of the period but ultimately, it is a fine example of a great designer at his best.   The jacket of this Cardin ensemble features an extraordinary sculpted collar that encircles the torso and is a great start to the calibre of works the NGV plans to acquire with the support of the Bulgari Funding Program – NGV International Fashion Acquisitions.

In 2011, Bulgari supported the NGV in the acquisition of a major work for the International Fashion and Textiles Collection. Bulgari funded a spectacular gala event in the Great Hall and the proceeds from that evening supplemented a donation the funds for the purchase of a rare and beautiful velvet coat, by celebrated Venetian artist and designer, Mariano Fortuny. Fortuny created timeless clothes that appealed to the artistically-minded and adventurous women of the day.  It was this partnership and extraordinary outcome that has inspired this longer term partnership and goal.

The NGV has the strongest collection of fashion in the southern hemisphere and leading the Asia-Pacific region in collecting and exhibiting international and Australian fashion.

Bulgari was founded in Rome in 1884 as a single jewellery shop, whose magnificent jewellery creations soon became emblems of Italian excellence. Throughout the last few decades Bulgari developed into a global luxury brand renowned for its highly creative design in jewels, watches and accessories, and retailing in the major luxury retail precincts of the world. Up until 2011 Bulgari was majority-owned by the Bulgari family and, though it is now part of the LVMH Group, the Bulgari family are still instrumental in the management of the Bulgari brand and the design of jewellery. International success has carried the distinctive Bulgari design into a diversified portfolio of products and services and, increasingly, hotels.

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