Woman's dress

Designed by Gianni Versace (Italian, 1946–1997)


Center back: 91.4 cm (36 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Metallic mesh and cotton plain-weave

Not On View


Contemporary Art, Europe, Textiles and Fashion Arts



Tiger print metal chain linked toga mini dress with black cotton lining, gold synthetic trim along edges, and criss-cross straps on the back. Labeled: “Gianni Versace/ Made in Italy/ 42”

Gianni Versace is one of the most well-known designers of the 1980s and 1990s. He was celebrated for his sexy and creative clothing, which was often worn by celebrities and models. Early in his career he became interested in working with a softly draping metallic mesh. During the late 1970s and early 1980s he created classically-inspired dresses such as this “gladiator” dress, which plays off the animal-print metallic fabric as both alluring and as a kind of pseudo-protective armor. Versace continued to return to this fabric throughout his career.


Purchased privately in Los Angeles, CA in 2005 by Decades, Inc.; Purchased by MFA March 21, 2007

Credit Line

Museum purchase with funds donated by the Fashion Council, Museum of Fine Arts Boston