Film and fashion join forces for V&A exhibition

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A POST-MODERN cyberpunk outfit, complete with head- mounted television camera found its way into that bastion of the establishment, the Victoria & Albert Museum yesterday.

The outfit, complete with swivel-camera and armour-plated breastplate, was worn by the Spanish actress Victoria Abril, who played a television news vulture in Kika, the latest film from the black-humoured Spanish director, Pedro Almodovar.

The costume was jointly donated to the museum by Almodovar and the French fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier, who created it.

It will be given pride of place in 'Streetstyle, from Sidewalk to Catwalk, 1940 to Tomorrow' - a major fashion exhibition which opens at the V&A in November and which is sponsored by the Independent.

The outfit was presented to the museum at a charity party in the Fridge, a nightclub in Brixton, south London, to raise money for London Lighthouse, a centre for people with HIV and Aids.

'We'll go anywhere to collect special clothes for the museum,' the curator of 'Streetstyle', Amy de la Haye, joked as she dragged the cyberpunk outfit across the crowded dance floor.

Standing by, though not lending a hand, were Bibi Anderson, Almodovar's famously voluptuous actress, and the transvestite comedian Lily Savage, who said she would have preferred Gaultier's other costume from the film. That creation - used for the film's promotional posters, which were banned by London Transport - has naked breasts bursting through its fabric. 'I'd have to get a different wig to go with it,' Savage said.

To raise money for the London Lighthouse, Almodovar hosted an auction to which he donated a framed photograph taken on the set of his first hit film Women on the Edge of a Nervous Breakdown. It was bought for pounds 380 by Sandy Powell, the custome designer responsible for the film Orlando.

(Photograph omitted)