An Armani Privé dress from the exhibition

An exhibition celebrating Made in Italy and the tight relationship between fashion and food will open June 23 at New York’s Chelsea Market.

Called “L’Eleganza del Cibo” [“The Elegance of Food,” in English], the exhibit is being organized by the Italian Trade Commission in collaboration with Unindustria, the association of entrepreneurs and companies operating in Italy’s Lazio region.

The exhibit, which was first presented last year at the antique Trajan’s Market in Rome, includes 58 haute couture and ready-to-wear dresses created by both established and up-and-coming designers chosen by curators Stefano Dominella and Bonizza Giordani Aragno to showcase the mutual exchange between style, nutrition and the environment.

“I’ve always been intrigued by the relationship between food and fashion. On one hand, food nurtures the body, on the other, fashion stimulates the imagination and self-expression. But food also satisfies our taste and appetite, often inducing a culinary anxiety,” said Dominella, the curator of the exhibit who is also chief executive officer of Gattinoni. “Throughout the years fashion has incorporated all these layers into its creative irony. It’s from the mood of this ‘Culinary Dolce Vita’ that I conceived the idea to combine fashion and food, both to smile at this ‘odd couple’ as well as to deepen the many nuances connected to them, including their ties to nature and the environment.”

Among the dresses to be on display at the Chelsea Market are an Armani Privé gown inspired by bamboo plants, an Etro style digitally printed with the image of a banquet with shellfish and pasta, as well as Salvatore Ferragamo archival shoes crafted from natural materials, including cork, raffia and hemp.

“L’Eleganza del Cibo” is part of the program the Italian government has launched to promote and import our fashion and food in the United States,” said Italian Trade Commissioner Maurizio Forte. “This exhibit offers a great opportunity to present, for the first time in the United States, the fascinating liaison between two key assets of our extraordinary Italian style.”

The exhibition will be open to the public until July 4.