For Immediate Release: September 4, 2013
Further information: Rachel Flor (617) 514-1662, Rachel.Flor@jfklfoundation.org
Boston, MA– Boston, MA – In honor of the 60th anniversary of the September 12, 1953 wedding of Senator John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Lee Bouvier, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum will feature an artist’s unique paper replica of the ivory silk taffeta gown worn by the bride in a special display opening September 12 and running through November 3.
The future President and First Lady were married in Newport, Rhode Island on September 12, 1953, following a two-year courtship. For the occasion, Jacqueline Kennedy wore an ivory silk taffeta gown which required 50 yards of material and took more than two months to make. It was the creation of Ann Lowe, an African-American dress-maker born in Grayton, Alabama, who had designed gowns for the matrons of high society families including the du Pont, Lodge, and Auchincloss families. Ms. Lowe was 54 when she designed the Bouvier wedding gown, which featured a portrait neckline and bouffant skirt decorated with interwoven bands of tucking and tiny wax flowers.
In 2004, Marshall Field’s Department Store in Chicago commissioned Belgian artist Isabelle de Borchgrave and her collaborator Rita Brown to create this exact paper replica of Jacqueline Kennedy’s wedding gown. De Borchgrave painted and prepared the paper to mimic the texture and color of the original silk. Brown then folded, glued and stitched the paper into a gown, replicating all of the details of the original: from the pleated bodice to the 24-inch waist to the ruffled florets on the skirt. Before beginning their project, de Borchgrave and Brown visited the JFK Library, carefully examining and measuring the original gown and all of its details.
Jacqueline Kennedy’s actual wedding gown, part of the Kennedy Library’s permanent collection, is now too fragile for display and was last featured in a 2003 exhibit marking the 50th wedding anniversary. The paper replica, donated to the Kennedy Library by Marshall Field’s, is being displayed at the Library for the first time. It will remain on display through November 3, 2013.
Click here to download a high resolution image of the artist’s replica of the gown.
Click here to download a high resolution archival image of the wedding of Senator John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Lee Bouvier.
One of Boston’s most popular destinations for visitors from all nations, the architectural masterpiece designed by I.M. Pei sits on a 10-acre waterfront site on Columbia Point offering panoramic views of Boston’s skyline and Harbor Islands.
General admission to the Museum at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library is $12.00. Admission for seniors over the age of 62 and college students with appropriate identification is $10.00, and for children ages 13-17, $9.00. Children ages 12 and under are admitted for free.
The Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., with the exceptions of Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. The Library is located in the Dorchester section of Boston, off Morrissey Boulevard, next to the campus of the University of Massachusetts/Boston. Parking is free. There is free shuttle-service from the JFK/UMass T Stop on the Red Line. The Museum is fully handicapped accessible. For more information, call (866) JFK-1960 or access www.jfklibrary.org on the Internet.
The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is a presidential library administered by the National Archives and Records Administration and supported, in part, by the Kennedy Library Foundation, a non-profit organization.