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Sporting Life

Start Date July 1972
End Date February 1973
Venue Metropolitan Museum of Art
Location New York, USA

SPORTING LIFE, the current installation in the galleries of the new Costume Institute, offers a view of some of the Museum’s store of body coverings designed specifically for use in active sports. The exhibition does not include that class of leisure clothing some­times referred to as sportswear,” nor does it attempt to trace the evolution of sport cloth­ing from ordinary clothes worn for sport into special functional clothing designed for sport. Instead, the costumes on exhibition offer a glimpse of some old and new solutions to the problem of providing cover for a body in action, .in the frame of reference, of city cultures of the Western world. The degree of action and the number of limbs called into play ulti­mately determined the forms these garments took. But, humans being what they are, the factors of fashion, modesty, usage and practicality also took a hand in shaping the new look. The costumes on view can be read as a barometer indicating the state of these and other visual, social and economic factors at different times during the world’s last century and a half.

Images courtesy of Metropolitan Museum of Art