Missoni speaks in colour. Zig zags, stripes, vibrant combinations; in an age where fashion houses have moved beyond having a 'specialism' in, perhaps, leather or embroidery, Missoni has ownership of a unique signature. That is, colour - use of tone, use of pattern, weaving colours throughout the span of the brand's luxury offering and iconic textiles. Ottavio and Rosita Missoni met in 1948, when Ottavio came to London in 1948 for the London Olympics, where he qualified for the final of the 400m-hurdle race. Rosita's family business was a shawl and ladieswear manufacturers from Varese, in northern Italy. The pair married in 1953 and Missoni the fashion house was born, and is continued today by two further generations of Missonis.
This exhibition draws from the brand's rich and well-tended archive from 1953 onward, pairing a selection of vintage pieces, particularly classic knitwear, with the art that inspired their designers. Over 40 paintings by 20th century European artist such as Sonia Delauney explore the research and inspiration that helped develop Missoni's uniquely recognisable relationship with colour and textile.
Missoni Art Colour is at the Fashion and Textile Museum in London until September 4 2016.
Ottavio and Rosita Missoni, 1984. Photograph by Guiseppe Pino.
Designs by Ottavio Missoni
Missoni in Grazia, 1968
Missoni S/S 2002. Photograph by Mert & Marcus.
'Struttura spaziale in tensione', 1952, by Nino Di Salvatore.
Untitled, 1973, Ottavio Missoni
Untitled, 1972, Ottavio Missoni
Untitled, 1936, Sonia Delaunay