— UPDATE 3.4/ Nassau County Museum of Art: Halston Style, March 25 / July 9

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First comprehensive retrospective of the
work of the famed American fashion designer


March 25 – July 9, 2017


“You are only as good as the people you dress.”

– Halston


“This is a story of a self-made man who rose from

 the amber prairies to the glittering heights of success

 in Manhattan. Along the way he created a uniquely

American definition of chic that remains relevant

 to this day – one of simplicity made elegant

He was the first superstar American designer.”

– Lesley Frowick,

Halston: Inventing American Fashion


The first comprehensive retrospective of the work of the American fashion designer Halston will be presented at Nassau County Museum of Art in Roslyn Harbor, New York from Saturday, March 25 through Sunday, July 9, 2017. Sponsored by “H Halston exclusively at Lord & Taylor” and occupying the entire Museum, the exhibition Halston Style is organized by Guest Curator Lesley Frowick, Halston’s niece and confidant. Lesley Frowick is author of the deluxe Rizzoli publication Halston: Inventing American Fashion that serves as the exhibition catalogue.  

Focusing on the life and art of Roy Halston Frowick, better known as the self-crafted name of distinction, Halston, this exhibition includes many never-before-seen objects from the designer’s personal archives. Halston left these original materials to Lesley Frowick’s care, with the directive to use them to tell the story of the designer’s career and lifestyle. 

The exhibition will include more than 60 Halston fashions, juxtaposed with photographs, artwork, illustrations and accessories, as well as film and video documentation. Among the highlights of the exhibition are Halston’s iconic pillbox hat design, made famous by Jacqueline Kennedy in 1961, and also his innovative Ultrasuede shirtdress garment. Masterful examples of the designer’s classic gown silhouettes are abundantly on view.  

Galleries within the exhibition will focus on different milestones of Halston’s career, such as his early work within the elegant Hat Salon at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City. Designs that used innovative fabrics – such as hand-painted silks, comfortable cashmeres and the newly-developed Ultrasuede – are complemented by working sketches drawn by Halston himself or his design assistant Steven Sprouse and the fashion illustrator Joe Eula.  

Other sections within the exhibition are devoted to Halston’s collaborations with artistic contemporaries. Elsa Peretti designed the classic Halston fragrance bottle and the elegant jewelry chosen by the designer to accessorize and accompany his garments. The photographer Hiro produced much of the imagery employed to market, advertise and promote the Halston brand. Halston designed numerous costumes for dances choreographed by the legendary Martha Graham. Cosmetic ads, fabric designs and other surprises emerged from the designer’s close friendship and association with Pop artist Andy Warhol.

Halston designed for many celebrated American women, among them First Ladies Jacqueline Kennedy and Betty Ford. He also was a favorite of several top actresses and performers, including Elizabeth Taylor and Lauren Bacall. But most notable was his close association with Liza Minelli. Having designed the gown she wore when accepting the Oscar for Cabaret, he went on to design her costumes for film and stage, finally becoming Minelli’s exclusive designer. 

Halston’s life and style became the last word in glamour. His personal appearance was captured by a generation of photographers, while his home and office surroundings conveyed discerning tastes in modern and contemporary art. Halston and his celebrity companions were regular visitors to the infamous Studio 54 during its heyday from 1977 to 1979, when it was ground zero for the disco scene’s razzle-dazzle melding of music, nightlife and fashion.

With a deep affection for his country and sense of patriotism, Halston supported American institutions and businesses. He was a trailblazer in commercial licensing endeavors, designing not only an affordable line of clothing for J.C. Penny, but also uniforms for the Girl Scouts and the U.S. Olympic team. 

Special programs that accompany the exhibition include presentations by the curator Lesley Frowick, discussions and interviews with clients and professional associates of the designer, as well as film and video screenings documenting Halston’s contributions to the fashion industry. 

The exhibition will also serve as inspiration for the Museum’s family programs during the run of Halston Style. For further information on programs that accompany the exhibition, please visit nassaumuseum.org/events after March 5. 



Sculpture Park

Approximately 30 works, many of them monumental in size, by renowned artists including Fernando Botero, Tom Otterness, George Rickey and Mark DiSuvero among others, are situated to interact with nature on the museum’s magnificent 145-acre property.


Walking Trails

The museum’s 145 acres include many marked nature trails through the woods, perfect for family hikes or independent exploration.



From restored formal gardens of historic importance to quiet little nooks for dreaming away an afternoon, the museum’s 145 acre property features many lush examples of horticultural arts. Come view our expanded gardens and beautiful new path to the museum.





March 25-July 9

Halston on Film

The exhibition Halston Style includes films and videos related to Halston’s contributions to the world of fashion; films are screened at various times.



Thursday, May 4 at 5:30 p.m.

Spring Sculpture Stroll

Laura Lynch & Katie Hillman

Take a walk through the grounds guided by Laura Lynch and Katie Hillman of the Museum’s Education Department. Different sculptures are featured in each of these semi-annual

strolls. Limited to 50 people, meet on the front terrace of the Museum. $5 for members, $10 for nonmembers, register at nassaumuseum.org. Rain date is May 18.




Sundays, 1-4 p.m.

Family Tour at 1 p.m.

Art Activities at 1:30 p.m.

May 7, 14, 21, 28

Family Sundays at the Museum

Converse, collaborate and create at Family Sundays at the Museum. Be inspired by the works in the galleries, explore new art materials. Family Sundays at the Museum allows children and the adults in their lives to take time to reconnect while talking about and making art together. During the showing of Halston Style, family art projects will draw inspiration from the wide variety of objects and documentation on view in the exhibition. New projects are featured every week. Free with Museum admission. Reservations not needed. 



Sunday, May 7 at 3 p.m.

Fashion Design Workshop

See Halston’s Process

Professor Joseph Pescatore

Professor Pescatore of Nassau Community College discusses the wide variety of inspirations for fashion design, citing designs that spring from a sketch and others that are strongly influenced by the drape or pattern of material. Halston, the subject of the Museum’s current exhibition, at times was inspired by origami, the Japanese art of paper cutting. Program is limited to 15 people.




Thursdays at 1 p.m.

May 18, June 15

Brown Bag Lectures

Riva Ettus

Bring a sandwich and enjoy lunch with friends as Museum Docent Riva Ettus presents an informative talk on our current major exhibition, Halston Style. Afterward, join the 2 p.m. public exhibition tour. Free with Museum admission. Reservations not needed; first come, first seated.




Sunday, May 21 at 3 p.m.

Halston’s Inner Circle:

A Conversation with Guest Curator Lesley Frowick

Lesley Frowick and Friends

An intimate, behind-the-scenes look at Halston’s life and career as America’s first superstar fashion designer through the eyes of someone who had a front row seat to it all. In the early 1980s, Halston invited his niece Lesley Frowick into his inner circle to bear witness to his privileged life and career, and with the hope that she would keep his legacy alive. He gave her his archive with the request to write his life story if she would so choose. Lesley will be joined in this discussion by Halston’s models Alva Chinn and Toby Spinelli, as well as designer Naeem Kahn, and others in Halston’s world. Museum admission plus $20. Register at nassaumuseum.org/events.




Tuesdays, 1-2 p.m.

May 23, June 27

Sketching in the Galleries

Glenna Kubit

You don’t have to be able to draw to enjoy this program! This is not about the final result but rather about taking time to look closely at works of art in our galleries to get a better understanding of how the artist created them. Led by artist and educator Glenna Kubit, Sketching in the Galleries encourages visitors to slow down as they engage in a variety of drawing assignments that focus on the use of line, proportion, texture and value. Paper, pencils will be provided (participants are welcome to bring their own sketch books). Museum admission plus $5, program is limited to 15 participants per session. Register at nassaumuseum.org/events.


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Nassau County Museum of Art is located at One Museum Drive in Roslyn Harbor, just off Northern Boulevard, Route 25A, two traffic lights west of Glen Cove Road. The museum is open Tuesday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-4:45 p.m. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for seniors (62 and above) and $4 for students and children (4 to12). Members are admitted free. Docent-led tours of the exhibition are offered at 2 p.m. each day; tours of the mansion are offered each Saturday at 1 p.m.; meet in the lobby, no reservations needed. Tours are free with museum admission. Family art activities and family tours are offered Sundays from 1 pm; free with museum admission. Call (516) 484-9338, ext. 12 to inquire about group tours. The Museum Store is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call (516) 484-9337 for current exhibitions, events, days/times and directions or log onto nassaumuseum.org. 

Nassau County Museum of Art is chartered and accredited by New York State as a not-for-profit private educational institution and is governed by a privately elected Board of Trustees. The Museum and its programs are made possible through the support of Nassau County under County Executive Edward P. Mangano and the Nassau County Legislature; the Board of Trustees and Museum Members; Sponsors of Exhibitions and Events, Government and Foundation Grants, Corporate and Private Donors as well as earned income.



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