The ‘Exhibiting Fashion’ website captures and records details of international fashion exhibitions for the purposes of capturing, investigating and reappraising the discipline of fashion exhibition-making.
It is organised by year and provides details (as available) of the curator/s, designer/s, venue/s, dates and installation imagery, along with the press release and host venues (mostly museums) own website information. Occasionally, we invite an entirely personal creative response to one exhibition.
The defining date of 1971 draws upon research by Amy de la Haye and Judith Clark in ‘Exhibiting Fashion: Before and After 1971’ (Yale University Press, 2014). It echoes Dr Jeffrey Horsley’s contribution, ‘An Incomplete Inventory of Fashion Exhibitions Since 1971’ which was interpreted graphically by Charlie Smith Design, who have designed this website. We thank Dr Ben Whyman, Bre Stitt and Laura Thornley for their detailed research and ongoing commitment to the project.
‘Exhibiting Fashion’ is a work in progress which will be regularly updated and expanded. It is a work of co-creation that welcomes, and depends upon, your contributions of other fashion exhibitions from around the world and missing information. Kindly email this, along with any good quality imagery, to firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope this site will provide a valuable resource about the history and current developments within this increasingly popular, inclusive and dynamic discipline.
In collating our list of keywords, used to “code” different elements of each exhibition in a descriptive manner, we have been aware of a number of things. The meaning of words change. Vocabularies shift and mutate. If you label something, you limit it.
As we have worked on this project, we were very aware of how words often convey a lack of subtlety. Taxonomy and archiving of knowledge is increasingly problematic. We wanted to use words and inspire concepts that were mutable and understandable.
Generalising about vital and important components of identity is problematic. As we continued the journey of exploring keywords, some ideas and concepts were difficult to pin down. Just because something is difficult doesn’t mean we don’t work hard to pay attention to, clarify and amend categorisation and terminologies.
This is an evolving set of keywords and dialogue is important to maintain the rigour and health of the terminology. We will regularly review the keywords, consulting with experts in their fields to refine and improve our offering. We encourage you to contact us if you have any comments, suggestions or ideas that would help us clarify the way we describe or conceptualise things.
Judith Clark, Professor of Fashion & Museology and Amy de la Haye, Professor of Dress History & Curatorship
Joint Directors of the Centre for Fashion Curation, London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London
The Centre for Fashion Curation based at London College of Fashion, exists to challenge, develop and disseminate fashion curatorial practices and theories by demonstrating and enabling rigorous, innovative and experimental work.
Every effort has been made to secure imagery permissions.