Before Beyonce, there was Lauren Bacall.
The countless odes and elegies to the late actress, who died last week at age 89, have all but confirmed her place as Hollywood Golden Age’s queen of cool.
And now, we hear her impeccable style (which a “To Have or Have Not” obsessed tween may or may not have tried to imitate at one point — unsuccessfully) is getting its own retrospective.
The Cut reports that the museum at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology will soon unveil an exhibit showcasing Bacall’s (nee Betty Joan Persky, in the Bronx) wardrobe. Preparations for the show were reportedly underway before the announcement of Bacall’s death by the Bogart estate last Tuesday night
According to the Associated Press, the show will focus on her 1950s-60s style, and highlight contributions from the star’s five favorite designers: Norman Norell, Marc Bohan for Dior, Pierre Cardin, Yves Saint Laurent, and Emanuel Ungaro.
Designer Isaac Mizrahi best summed up her combination of sass, smarts and style in the April 2001 issue of InStyle. Remarking on her 1979 Oscars appearance, he quipped:
“Wearing a 50-year-old Fortuny dress proved how smart Lauren Bacall was,” he said. “A smart Jewish girl from the Bronx who knew Norell as well as Loehmann’s. She’s our reference for what smart looks like. Look up ‘smart’ in the dictionary — you’ll find her picture.”
A nice Jewish girl in haute couture? We’re there!
Anne Cohen was the Forward’s deputy digital media editor. When she’s not looking for the secret Jewish history of Voodoo in New Orleans, or making lists about Ruth Bader Ginsburg, she writes for The Assimilator. She graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism with an M.S. magazine concentration in 2012.
Lauren Bacall's Style Is Getting A Museum Exhibit