In 1938, the painter and illustrator Christian Bérard designed three styles for Schiaparelli's Astrologique (Astrological) collection. He was inspired by the Three Graces painted by Raphaël in The Judgment of Paris. The central character wears a shocking pink silk cape called Phoebus, the back of which is embroidered with a face in a sunburst. The sun, the celestial body of light, was also the emblem of Louis XIV, who commissioned the Place Vendôme. This motif can be seen on the balustrades of the windows of the square.
Elsa Schiaparelli proclaimed a deep admiration for her friend Christian Bérard, called “Bébé”. In Shocking Life, she writes “To be approved and admired – and sometimes befriended – by Bébé was a consecration in the artistic, social and intellectual world of Paris”.
© Adagp, Paris 2016