In 1961, Gabrielle Chanel designed the dresses Delphine Seyrig wore in Alain Renais’ ‘Last Year at Marienbad’. Thanks to the support of CHANEL, the movie has been digitized and restored using the well-preserved original negatives from 1960. The restored version will open at the Venice Film Festival during a special evening hosted by the House.
This New Wave film tells the story of a woman being wooed by a suitor who tries to convince her that, one year earlier, she had promised to elope with him. Its cinematic style was revolutionary, introducing a psychological dimension to the story by constantly mixing reality and imagination and deconstructing narrative chronology.
An essential part of the story, the wardrobe allows the audience to piece together a sense of time. In an exceptional move for that period, Alain Resnais did not want Delphine Seyrig to wear costumes designed specifically for the role, but rather a real-life wardrobe that would evoke a modern, timeless allure. He turned to Gabrielle Chanel, who offered a selection of Haute Couture looks that were representative of that era’s contemporary fashion. Chanel’s style — a short-cropped garçonne hairdo, pearl necklaces and jeweled belts worn with elegantly minimalist dresses — worked perfectly for the character. On-screen, Delphine Seyrig shines as a woman of sophisticated charm and the ambassadress of French elegance.