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Monday, August 15, 2022

brief history of the cone bra that Beyoncé wears as a symbol of escapism

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“Creating this album allowed me a space to dream and an escape route during a terrifying time for the world,” Beyoncé says in a note on her website accompanying the release of her new album, Renaissance. The result, which she has worked on for the past three years, she explains, “allowed me to feel free and adventurous at a time when everything was at a standstill. My intention was to create a safe space, a space without judgment, a space to be free from perfectionism.” A soundtrack for the dance floor that, like Lemonade, is accompanied by a lavish series of photographs in which the artist gives a good account of her handling of her visual codes. With little trace of that desire to flee from perfectionism that she talks about in her statement, the American wears designs from large luxury firms such as Mugler, Alaïa, Gucci or Dolce & Gabbana. She also in pieces by designers outside the circuit such as Nusi Quero, Bethany Cordwell or Natalia Fedner (responsible for one of Rosalía’s most mediatic dresses). An aesthetic that evokes the greats of the seventies and eighties, from Bianca Jagger to Octavia St. Laurent, and that is the work of stylists Zerina Akers, Marni Senofonte and KJ Moody. Oh, Beyoncé is going there with #renaissance Love to our iconic queer and trans ancestors, Pepper LaBeija and Octavia St. Laurent, and their enduring legacies! pic.twitter.com/b2syMrzOnw – Raquel Willis (@RaquelWillis_) July 28, 2022 An allusion to Madonna is not lacking in this profusion of images, with one of the most representative garments of the subversion of the blonde: the conical bra. Beyoncé, a good handler of pop language, takes the elements to appropriate them and rewrite them. In the snapshot, she wears a Daniel Roseberry design for Schiaparelli’s spring-summer 2022 haute couture collection. “Certain doses of vulgarity and bad taste are important. They require humor and intelligence”, confessed the creative director in this magazine last November. A garment full of nuances and several decades of history. Sketch of one of Jean Paul Gaultier’s designs for Madonna’s Blond Ambition tour in 1990. Photo: getty images Madonna wasn’t the first to wear a cone bra. In fact, the pattern that emphasized the female breast and gave it an almost pointed shape was a staple in the 1950s. Back then it was known as the ‘bullet bra’ and it was a very graphic symbol of female sexualization, of the double standards of the time and of the reification to which actresses like Marilyn Monroe or Jayne Mansfield were subjected. The puritanical style of that decade, which equated women with a decorative object in the possession of the man of the house, tolerated few concessions to eroticism. But the pointy bra, capable of marking the chest even under a prudent crew neck sweater, was one of them. Marilyn Monroe in a turtleneck sweater that greatly outlined her contours thanks to the pointy bra she wore under it. Photo: getty images Madonna wore it not under a sweater, but under a pinstripe suit on her 1990 Blond Ambition tour. The ensemble appeared at the beginning of the show and, although it came off the jacket after a few seconds, it served to play with the male and female dress codes. Underneath was the conical corset, in dusty pink silk, which has become one of the most famous garments in the history of music and fashion. At first glance, the queen of pop conveyed her message of insurrection against everything established. She screamed that she was in control of her, that she dominated the narrative and that she did with her body what she wanted. The corset, which for so many centuries had been responsible for modeling the female silhouette, was adopted by the singer to become an almost aggressive garment. One that encouraged like few others the generations that came later to feel free to channel their sexuality through the clothes they wore on stage. Madonna, with the corset designed by Jean Paul Gaultier, on her Blond Ambition tour. Photo: getty images The entire wardrobe for Blond Ambition, including of course the corset, was the work of Jean Paul Gaultier, at the request of Madonna herself. The designer told it in an interview with The New York Times in 2001: “When Madonna called me for the first time in 1989, two days before my prêt-à-porter show, I thought my assistant was joking”. The conical corsets, which appeared for the first time among Gaultier’s proposals in the eighties, were already in the blonde’s wardrobe; he had already worn one for the premiere of Desperately Seeking Susan (1985). “I was a big fan,” the Frenchman continued, “she asked me if she would do the tour. He knew what she wanted: a pinstripe suit, feminine corsetry. Madonna likes my clothes because it combines masculine and feminine.” The making of all the outfits took several months and involved fittings in Paris and New York. On the left, an image from Jean Paul Gaultier’s fall-winter 1984/85 ready-to-wear show, with conical breasts. On the right, the model Iman with one of the designer’s bras in the nineties. Photo: getty images More than thirty years later Beyoncé takes the baton from the bra to stir up all that symbology, making it her own: she embraces the dose of bad taste that the designer of her corset spoke of, the irony, the subversion of Madonna and eroticism of the women of the fifties. And she wears it in her celebration of the dance music that is Renaissance. Her breasts are again highlighted with conical shapes in Roseberry’s designs for Schiaparelli. Photo: Getty Images

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– Article Written By @Patricia Rodríguez from https://smoda.elpais.com/moda/actualidad/sujetador-cono-beyonce-madonna-jean-paul-gaultier-schiaparelli-marilyn/

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