Yves Saint Laurent, the master of couture, has returned less than two years after his death in a major retrospective previewed Monday, covering his four decades as a fashion designer whose artistry empowered women.
The exhibition features 307 pieces from the designer's collection, both haute couture and ready-to-wear, from his start in 1958 with Christian Dior to loosely pleated chiffon gowns in his final collection in 2002.
In between, the visitor takes a walk through the innovative themes that mark fashion today, from the tuxedo, introduced in 1966, to the opulent use of gold and the so-called "color collisions," the bold pairings of colors now seen in salons and on city streets.
The tribute to Saint Laurent, who died in June 2008 at the age of 71, opens in the midst of Paris fashion shows, with the preview held on the day the YSL brand displays its fall ready-to-wear collection.
The retrospective takes place far from the catwalks, fittingly in the sumptuous halls of the recently renovated 19th century Petit Palais where the city of Paris houses its Musee des Beaux Arts, home to many old masters.
Petit Palais Museum, Paris, from March 11 to August 29.<iframe name="shopstyle_search" width="562" height="254" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="display:block;" src="http://widget.shopstyle.com/widget?pid=uid7201-1162351-77&fts=yves%20saint%20laurent&width=4&height=1"></iframe>