25 January 2024–01 September 2024
Illustration has always been a strong and captivating communication tool. Gladys Perint Palmer's fashion illustrations for Missoni are a stunning example of how art can elevate and communicate a brand's aesthetic.
Rosita Missoni grew up cutting out sketches from fashion magazines she used to find in the family company's atelier and since then she has always been captivated by the expressive potential of fashion illustrations to project herself towards fantastic worlds. So, even when in the 1960s the Missonis began to commission their advertising campaigns to fashion photographers, Rosita was always fascinated by illustration, entrusting her creations to Brunetta until the 1970s, to Antonio Lopez in the 1980s and to Gladys Perint Palmer since the 1990s.
Rosita and Gladys met thanks to the fashion journalist Anna Piaggi who in 1989, during the period of Milan fashion shows, had curated the exhibition Gladys Perint Palmer. Characters together with Luca Stoppini. Rosita was enthusiastic and proposed Gladys to illustrate the garments from her collections, to communicate the cheerful and ironic side of the Missoni fashion. A collaboration that went on for ten years and a friendship that still lasts.
Colin McDowell, British writer, stylist and fashion curator, in the introduction to Gladys Perint Palmer's book, Fashion People (Assouline, 2003) describes her like this “(…) Gladys, whose work is always signed GPP, is not a painter but an illustrator of rare quality, possibly the last of a long and honoured line. Gladys has a highly idiosyncratic style – shrewd, detached and amused – based on an eye that has grown wise and sardonic with time. (…) Never interested in line-for-line reproduction of what she sees before her, Gladys soon learnt that capturing the character of a person or ‘fixing’ the personality of a garment was the result of a clear eye for detail, followed by the intellectual rigour to reduce all the information before her to a few telling lines. This is a skill all but lost today. Gladys is of the old school. She is a trained illustrator who spent three years at St. Martin’s School of Art in London learning her trade, followed by time spent honing in Parsons New York. Since then she has drawn for some of the most luminous names in Fashion including Missoni, Versace, Geoffrey Beene, Oscar de la Renta and John Galliano at Dior. Her work has appeared in Harper’s Bazaar, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, the San Francisco Examiner and the Style section of the London Sunday Times. (…) Born in Budapest, Gladys is a true daughter of an ancient country, turning her countrymen’s passion and angst into a wryly humorous point of view (…)”.