Google Images was partially born out a need to serve people’s interest in looking up the iconic green Versace dress Jennifer Lopez wore to the Grammy Awards in 2000. To celebrate the anniversary of the moment, Google partnered with the Italian fashion designer to recreate the dress — and show off many of its products in the process.
A recent blog post from the company states that it “reunited” with designer Donatella Versace “to celebrate nearly two decades since this iconic moment in fashion (and Google) history.” A revamped version of the dress was worn by Lopez for Versace’s official showcase at Milan Fashion Week.
Lopez’s walk in the modern re-design caught worldwide attention, but it was also a showcase for Google’s various products. The blog notes that the company’s VR painting app, Tilt Brush, “helped decorate the runway space with digital artwork inspired by the new print.” The show even incorporated a demonstration of Google’s voice-activated AI helper, Google Assistant.
The dress may have floored fashion critics in February 2000 when it first debuted, but it also made Google’s team realize they had to upgrade the search engine’s capabilities. Former CEO Eric Schmidt wrote in 2015 about the ridiculous number of search queries Lopez’s dress received the night of and day after the music award show. Google was already trying to figure out how to service its users, who wanted “more than just text.”
“At the time, it was the most popular search query we had ever seen,” Schmidt wrote. “But we had no sure-fire way of getting users exactly what they wanted: JLo wearing that dress. Google Image Search was born.”
The entire Versace runway show can be watched on YouTube. The various pieces are beautiful, but it also has a some fun moments for Google fans, too.