Spotlights on Collections

From 8th february to 18th may 2014

In October 2013, the Centre national du costume de scène expanded its facilities with a new permanent space dedicated to the Nureyev Collection. To celebrate this event and its seven years of existence, the CNCS wishes to revisit its collections in 2014. Spotlight on Collections was for the public the opportunity to discover or rediscover some of the finest showcases of previous exhibitions and for the CNCS, the pretext to reveal some secrets about its collections.

Spotlight on exhibitions

Selected from the most emblematic exhibitions – Bêtes de scène (2006 ), Christian Lacroix, costumier (2007), Les Mille et une nuits (2008), Au Fil des fleurs (2009), Operas russes (2009), Vestiaire de Divas (2010), L’art du costume à la Comédie-Française (2011) , L’Envers du decor (2012) and culminating as well as echoing the Nureyev Collection, the room Bayadère from the Rudolf Nureyev exhibition (2009) - each exhibition space treats one aspect of stage costume’s life. The CNCS also wants to shed light on the profession relating to the realization of an exhibition: the selection of costumes amongst the treasures of the collections and techniques for use of the mannequins, through the scenography and exhibition stewardship...

Spotlight on collections

In 1995, the Ministry of Culture and Communication initiated the opening of the National Centre stage costume, the first conservation center in France or abroad entirely devoted to theatrical material heritage. Its missions include the conservation, study and promotion of a collection of over 10,000 theatre, opera and ballet costumes as well as painted décor and deposits from the Centre’s three founder members institutions: the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the Comédie-Française and the Opéra national de Paris, together with the center’s own collections and donations from theatres, theatre companies, costumiers and artists.

Addressed implicitly in previous exhibitions, design, embroidery and sewing techniques, alterations and games behind the scenes on stage are this time the main theme of Spotlight on Collections. In addition, this retrospective reveals professions and backstage of the CNCS: identification and inventory, conservation of the costumes following a policy of preventive conservation, restoration and valorisation of the costumes. Thus, the CNCS wishes to respond to key issues related to the genesis of its collections, the life of the costumes in its walls and its heritage object status.