My Thoughts on Grace Kelly: From Movie Star to Princess at TIFF Bell Lightbox

Grace Kelly: From Movie Star to Princess is the newest exhibition at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.  I saw it today as part of preview for TIFF members. The exhibition will be opening for the general public tomorrow and it will run until January 22.

I found that each major exhibition that has been displayed at the Lightbox were each curated with a certain theme – the Tim Burton exhibition concentrated on Burton’s art and props from his films and the Fellini exhibition was all about photography and paparazzi culture.  The theme for the Grace Kelly exhibition is undoubtedly fashion.

The bulk of the exhibition is made up the dresses she wore during her life – both as a movie star and later as Princess of Monaco.  I would probably say that her wedding dress can be described the central piece of the exhibition, given the fact that it has a room of its own.  Another notable dress is the one she wore when she won the Best Actress Oscar for her role in The Country Girl (the Oscar is on display as well).

On the subject of her Oscar win, it is interesting see on display the accompanying documentation that came with her nomination.  This includes a nomination certificate and a letter from the Academy giving instructions about the ceremony (including the fact that acceptance speeches should be kept short).  There were also a few of her Academy membership cards on display.

I was most familiar with Grace Kelly through her work with Alfred Hitchcock and exhibition features a section all about the three films she made with the director.  The most interesting display in this section is a series of letters Hitchcock wrote her (after she became Princess of Monaco), which really emphasizes how close they remained, even after she stopped acting.

Those are my main highlights from the exhibition.  Other items of note include various other letters and telegraphs (including a letter from Bing Crosby), posters from her films, her jewelry (including her tiara), and some home movies shot on Super-8.

Overall, I thought it was a very interesting exhibition.

Sean Kelly Author

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described über-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).