This beautiful volume explores the exquisite paper costumes of the Belgian artist Isabelle de Borchgrave. Author Jill D’Alessandro contextualizes de Borchgrave’s work within the rich tapestry of art and couture history, examining how the artist brings long-lost fashions to life through an intricate process of tailoring, crumpling, braiding, pleating, and painting paper. Luxurious reproductions of de Borchgrave’s astonishing trompe-l’oeil effects offer an intimate encounter with the work, from the austere white dresses and Papiers à la Mode to the lavish Fortuny and Medici collections. A special section focuses on the making of a new work inspired by a 17th-century Italian portrait in the collection of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Jill D’Alessandro is the curator of textile arts at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.