Update: The exhibition has been extended through May 11.
There’s a secret to many of those perfectly cinematic coifs: It’s Italian wigmaker Rocchetti & Rocchetti, whose hairpieces have graced the heads of such stars as Sophia Loren, Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio.
“Star Wigs — La Mano Italiana Crea,” an exhibition at the Italian Embassy that is open to the public through May 11, delves into this behind-the-scenes part of the movie business with a display of 30 wigs, some with costumes to match. The artifacts are being displayed as part of the Year of Italian Culture in the U.S.
Rocchetti & Rocchetti don’t just make wigs — they make characters. Hair can shape a role, as it did for Kirsten Dunst’s let-them-eat-cake Marie Antoinette, who wore a Rocchetti-designed, confectionary-inspired wig for Sofia Coppola’s 2006 film. The artifacts are accompanied by a digital collage of photographs from the “La Dolce Vita” era of Italian cinema, and a documentary, “Handmade Cinema,” by Laura Delli Colli.
“Star Wigs — La Mano Italiana Crea,” on view at the Italian Embassy, 3000 Whitehaven St. NW, from May 3-11 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. by appointment. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for appointments. 202-612-4407. Free.