Monday, July 27, 2009
For fans of Ralph Rucci's architectural designs, his pieces are always having a moment. Last fall he honoured at the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt ninth annual National Design Awards Gala in New York City for his achievements in fashion after being featured in his own documentary on the Sundance Channel. The accolades were well-deserved- the designer in 2002 became the first American to be invited to show at the couture shows in Paris since the 1930's.
Since then, he's been the subject of numerous museum retrospectives, including the Costume Institue of the Kent State University Museum in 2005, The Museum at the Fashion Institue of Technology in 2007 and the Phoenix Art Museum in 2008.
His love for Japanese culture is apparent not only in his rigorous-yet-ethereal clothes but also in the name of his label: in 1994, he renamed his RTW womenswear line “Chado” deriving from the traditional Japanese tea ceremony that requires 331 precise actions, signifying the many seemingly small components that must be perfected to achieve a flawless outcome.