Pavilion Kuala Lumpur pays homage to the quality and style that has come to define luxurious Italian fashion.

Dolce & Gabbana, Emilio Pucci, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Fendi, Etro, Valentino and Versace – these are just some of the many Italian designer labels that have embodied qualities of luxe clothing.

When it comes to the amazing scope of work accumulated over a span of several decades, Italian fashion truly endures. Today, there is still a keen international appetite for designs that bear the mark of “Made in Italy”.

Pavilion Kuala Lumpur thus acknowledges the role of Italian craftsmanship in the fashion industry. The shopping mall is organising a 60 Years Of Made In Italy exhibition that will run from Sept 1 to 14 at the Spanish Steps of its concourse area.

Addressing the media during a meet and greet, the ambassador of Italy to Malaysia, Mario Sammartino said, “Italy has become the cradle of design thanks to its designers who influence fashion, style and the haute couture world.

(From left) Dr Andrea Ambra, trade commissioner of the Italian Trade Agency, Joyce Yap, CEO of retail for Pavilion KL and Mario Sammartino, ambassador of Italy to Malaysia.

“This exhibition will showcase the history and evolution of Italian style and fashion, and is testimony to Italy’s tradition and great passion for the art of fashion design – which is appreciated around the world,” he explained.

60 Years Of Made In Italy is deemed to be the first of its kind in Asia and the biggest Italian fashion showcase in Malaysia. It has been made possible by the support of both the Embassy of Italy in Malaysia and the Italian Trade Agency.

Also present during the event was Dr Andrea Ambra, the Italian trade commissioner. According to him, Italian fashion – like other aspects to the culture, such as art and music – can be associated with emotion.

“From the dress you wear to the shoes and jewellery, their designs evoke a feeling of adoration. They reflect on fine taste and give a better idea of how a person has a respect for quality in their dressing,” he commented.

Paying homage to the leaders of Italian fashion, 60 Years of Made in Italy will be bringing in 30 treasured pieces from various archives and private collections. They were selected to give visitors a better idea of the sartorial genius that is to be considered as quintessentially Italian.

Dress modelled by Audrey Hepburn in the movie War And Peace, directed by King Vidor (1956), of which Gattinoni got the Oscars nominee for Best Costume.

For example, one can admire spectacular haute couture creations as seen on the red carpet. These were worn for premieres or awards ceremonies by various famous supermodels and celebrities.

An evening dress of a wild, feminine style created by Genny for Naomi Campbell in 1992, is one. There is also the masterpiece of “animalier” printed silk realised by Roberto Cavalli for Cindy Crawford in 2002.

That apart, iconic designs made memorable by big stars in internationally acclaimed films will be on display. Unique experimental garments that incorporate the use of sophisticated materials are included.

You have Marella Ferrera who designed a bodice completely made up of hand-embroidered mosaic pieces. Created in 1993, it is said to be inspired by the steps of Santa Maria del Monte of Caltagirone, Sicily.

A spotted-print Dolce & Gabbana bustier-dress made famous by actress Elizabeth Hurley in year 2000.

The exhibition will also reveal the “quirky aesthetic” of Moschino by means of a black bra dress (1988), as well as Missoni’s unmistakeable “put together” knitting (1999) and the “double theory of a woman’s personality”, expressed by a Franco Ciambella creation (2003).

Other Italian brands to be showcased include Emilio Schuberth, Egon von Fürstenberg, Galitzine, Gattinoni Couture, Gianfranco Ferré, Krizia, Laura Biagiotti, Luciano Soprani, Moschino, Raffaella Curiel, Renato Balestra and Sorelle Fontana.

CEO of retail for Pavilion KL, Joyce Yap stated, “Out of the different showcasing brands, we actually have eight of them housed in Pavilion KL. Another is Bulgari – of which will be joining the others to showcase a small collection of jewellery and watches.

The printed silk ‘Tiger’ dress by Roberto Cavalli, modelled by Cindy Crawford for Women under the Stars (Spring/ Summer 2000).

“We always say that retail is detail. With Italian fashion, they don’t compromise on the details and their craftsmanship. In terms of comfort level and investment value, it is something that you can hold on to and treasure.”

During the exhibition, there will be a series of events organised such as fashion shows, presentations, promotional sales and “tailor-made” services. Even automobile brands like Ferrari and Maserati will be showing off their most recent car models during the week.

Anna Fendi herself is said to be making an appearance, along with Italy’s famous couturier Raffaella Curiel. Various main authorities and high profile guests from Malaysia will also be present during the exhibition.

60 Years Of Made In Italy, which will be launched next Monday, is open to the public.