Guo Pei

Rihanna and Angelababy – seemingly worlds apart, if not for the fact that they’re both celebrities. Yet besides the fact that they are both hugely popular stars in their own right, they’ve also both worn a Guo Pei design for a major event.

For Rihanna, she wore the now-iconic Yellow Queen dress, which netizens playfully dubbed as the “omelette dress”, to the 2015 Met Gala. Angelababy on the other hand, had a more personal encounter with Guo’s work — she wore a Peranakan-inspired bridal gown to her wedding with Chinese actor Huang Xiaoming in 2015.

And it was a gown that grabbed the attention of many — including some back home. Jackie Yoong, curator of the Asian Civilisations Museum (ACM) and Peranakan Museum, shared that the media fanfare surrounding Angelababy’s gown at the time, drew their interest to the piece.

After observing her dress, they felt that it reminded them of a dress they had in the Peranakan Museum. They then reached out to Guo Pei to ask if her work had anything to do with their dress, and she confirmed that she was actually inspired by the said piece when she saw it during a travelling exhibition at the Musée du Quai Branly in Paris, France.

(Related: French artist Lilian Daubisse shares his inspiration for the latest Hermès window display)

Eventually, this sparked a discussion to have an exhibition in Singapore, which culminated in Guo Pei: Chinese Art and Couture exhibition. The exhibition will see 29 dresses from her oeuvre displayed in all its splendour across two galleries, to be held in the ACM.

Be exposed to various aspects of Chinese art, such as materials like silk and porcelain, the craft of embroidery, and motifs like peonies and phoenixes; find out how Guo — a woman who grew up during the austere times of the Cultural Revolution — became the most celebrated Chinese couturier of our time, and get a glimpse into the artistry behind her genius.

Guo Pei: Chinese Art and Couture runs from 15 June to 15 September.

1 Empress Place. Tel: 6332-7798.

Feature image: Instagram (@acm_sg)

(Related: Fashion brands are now looking to video games for inspiration)