A unique fashion exhibition is taking over Paris as six of the city's top museums host tributes to the late French designer Yves Saint Laurent to mark the 60th anniversary of his debut collection.

In 1962, Yves Saint Laurent, then aged 26, presented his first collection under his own name and changed the course of women's fashion. Moving away from the structured dresses and ultra-feminine look of the 1950s, the legendary French designer made his name in androgynous fashion by dressing women in masculine styles previously unseen on runways before including tuxedos, trench coats, tailored pantsuits and peacoats.

Yves Saint Laurent, French designer with two fashion models, Betty Catroux (left) and Loulou de la Falaise
Yves Saint Laurent with fashion models, Betty Catroux (left) and Loulou de la Falaise, outside his 'Rive Gauche' shop in 1968 © Getty Images

Sixty years later, Paris will tip its hat to the designer with a huge exhibition that takes over six of the city's leading museums: the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, the Centre Pompidou, the Museum of Modern Art, the Picasso Museum, and the Yves Saint Laurent Museum. Taking place from January 29 until May 15, the exhibition will showcase YSL's most famous styles alongside the art that inspired them, with tributes to Picasso, Matisse, Mondarin and more.

Read more: Things you should know before traveling to Paris

A silver emroidered YSL jacket alongside the art work of the Apollo Gallery in the Louvre
Yves Saint Laurent jacket from Spring 1990/ Organza embroidered with gold and rock crystal inspired by the Galerie d’Apollon, Musée du Louvre, Paris © 2020, Musée du Louvre/Antoine Mongodin

Speaking to the Guardian, exhibition curator, Mouna Mekouar, said an exhibition on this scale has never been done before in Paris. "I thought it would be impossible to get so many museums to agree to our idea, but they were all very interested and hugely enthusiastic from the beginning. It is the first time they have all worked together on one project," Mekouar said.

At the Galerie d'Apollon in the Louvre, you'll see how gold, light and jewels inspired Yves Saint Lauren's embroidery. Over in the Musée d’Orsay, you'll explore his connections with Marcel Proust and how the novelist's ideas of gender and sexuality influenced YSL's dress codes. The famous Mondrian shift dress from 1965 will be displayed alongside the painting that influenced it in the Centre Pompidou. A visit to the Yves Saint Laurent Museum will provide insight into the designer's creative processes through carefully preserved archive materials.

A YSL jacket from the autumn/winter 1979 collection inspired by Pablo Picasso’s Portrait of Nusch Éluard (1937)
A YSL jacket from the autumn/winter 1979 collection inspired by Pablo Picasso’s Portrait of Nusch Éluard (1937) © Succession Picasso - Gestion droits d'auteur/Yves Saint Laurent Aux Musées

"This archive and the exhibitions at the partner museums will enable us to retrace the unique creative journey of Yves Saint Laurent," organizers said in a press release. "Conceived as a sort of archipelago, the exhibition will offer new forms of dialogue and encourage visitors to create their own itineraries from one museum to another."

The exhibitions will run at the same time in each of the six museums. The event is called Yves Saint Laurent Aux Musées and while it's officially slated to run until May 15, some exhibitions will continue later into the year. Further information on each exhibition can be found on individual museum websites. Entry costs vary.

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