A history of Dresses from the Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Festival

Sequel time. After the success of the Oscar Dresses Infographic we applied the method known in content marketing circles as ‘iteration’, which means doing that popular thing you did again but slightly differently this time. There’s also the fact that we enjoy doing these things and the fact that lots of other people do too makes it all the more logical to carry on.

So we proudly present a sort-of ‘sister’ infographic to the Oscar one; ‘Les Robes Du Festival De Cannes a Travers Les Ages’ or what we’ll call her for the purposes of succinctness; The Cannes Dresses Infographic.

The story behind this one is short and straight-forward. We started to plan follow-up infographics and felt Cannes presented us with the ideal combination of film and fashion as well as a rich and iconic history. It also gave us enough time to plan and research an effective approach. Around the same time, Vanity Fair France contacted us, having seen the Oscar one and asked if we would produce something for them. It was hard to say no and as we were already planning on doing it, we obliged.

Research was harder than for the Oscar graphic and this led to some difficult design decisions. We couldn’t replicate the winners’ dresses concept for a number of reasons: there are often multiple winners who share the honours; actresses spend several days at the festival and wear several dresses; and availability and information on photography makes it very hard to identify which dress was worn for which film or ceremony, if even a photo can be found. Largely, online photographic sources of the festival, particularly of the red carpet becomes quite hard to find en masse pre-1990. It is only since the increased presence of Hollywood at the festival and perhaps the advent of digital photography that saw image sources appear in abundance. That said, the archive photography is wonderful and I have my eye out for offline sources now my appetite has been whetted.

Knowing we couldn’t represent the winners with a logical or complete design, we came up with the idea of simply showing a choice of dresses that represented the time and the place, both in terms of how they looked and who wore them. Therefore, Chloe here selected her pick of the best dresses worn by famous actresses that also could be said to be synonymous with the festival and cinema culture. We kept the layout the same as before but changed the colours and typeface to suit the new subject. And so we have a new, more European, perhaps more ‘arty’ sister to the Oscar graphic. We hope you like her.