Art in Context

The Women Behind the Brands


Tuesday, October 24, 2023
2 – 3 pm EDT
Zoom, Virtual Program

Explore the pioneering entrepreneurship of two Jewish women Helena Rubinstein (1872–1965) and Gaby Aghion (1921–2014) in this two-part virtual course. As the head of a cosmetics empire that extended across four continents, Helena Rubinstein was arguably, the first modern self-made woman magnate. Take a look back at the exhibition Helena Rubinstein: Beauty Is Power (October 31, 2014 – March 22, 2015) which reunited selections from Rubinstein’s famed collection of European paintings, African and Oceanic art, as well as jewelry and clothing designed by Cristóbal Balenciaga, Elsa Schiaparelli, and Paul Poiret. Then learn about the museum’s current exhibition Mood of the moment: Gaby Aghion and the house of Chloé and the work of iconic designers who began their careers with the brand, including Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, and Phoebe Philo. The exhibition showcases Aghion as a leader whose work altered the course of the global fashion industry in liberating women's bodies from the restrictive attitudes and styles of the time, as well as pioneering the emergence of luxury ready-to-wear. 

Tickets: $30 General; $24 Jewish Museum members

Each tour is led by a Jewish Museum educator and is one hour in length including Q&A. Classes take place over Zoom.

Please note that this is a live virtual two-session class, which will not be recorded for later viewing. Ticket purchase includes both sessions on October 24 and 31.

Photo by Dario Lasagni. Courtesy the Jewish Museum, NY.