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A History of Fashion. Collecting & Exhibiting

Start Date 02 October 2021
End Date 26 June 2022
Venue Palais Galliera
Location Paris, France
Curator Miren Arzalluz and Marie-Laure Gutton
Designer Ciel Architects

Visitors are taken on a chronological and thematic tour that tells two intertwined stories. From masterpiece to masterpiece, from the 18th century robe volante to the creations of Comme des Garçons, from the wardrobe of the Comtesse Greffulhe to the avant-garde designs of Rick Owens, the visitor is drawn into a history of fashion from the 18th century to the present day. And it is illustrated by the finest pieces in the Palais Galliera – the City of Paris fashion museum. Each chronological section deals with the specific features of that period: from the prints of the 19th century to the cocktail dresses of the 1950s, from the sumptuous materials and patterns of the 1920s to the minimalism of the Belgian and Japanese designers who emerged in the 1980s.

At the same time, the visitor is introduced to a history of the collection. The way it has been built up, its conservation and its presentation over the years all bear witness to a lasting museographic tradition and to the Palais Galliera’s importance in the study of the history of fashion. The museum’s major exhibitions and its many remarkable acquisitions are under the spotlight, starting with the founding donation, the collection of the Société de l’histoire du costume, which they gave to the City of Paris in 1920, and moving on to the most recent acquisitions – made possible, above all, by the Vogue Paris Foundation.

In a scenography inspired by the museum’s reserves ‘A History of Fashion. Collecting & exhibiting at the Palais Galliera’ brings together nearly 350 items from the collection – garments, accessories, graphic arts and photographs. The exhibition will run from 2 October 2021 to 26 June 2022 and will be presented in two consecutive and separate displays. There will be a three-week interruption between the two shows. For the sake of preventive conservation, many of the works will have to be replaced, which means that visitors will have the opportunity to come back and discover other masterpieces as well as works that are rarely exhibited.