Crystal Bridges launches its first fashion exhibition

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Crystal Bridges Museum of Art will seek to showcase two centuries of American fashion this fall in the museum’s first fashion exhibition.

“Fashioning America: Grit to Glamour” will feature more than 90 iconic American designers and labels and explore the country’s diverse fashion heritage and inventive spirit while highlighting the untold stories of under-recognized designers. and underrepresented, important contemporary movements shaping the industry, and The resonance of American fashion in global trends and visual culture.

Through seven themed sections showcasing the breadth of American fashion as the amalgamation of all things cultural, from denim jeans to swimwear, sneakers to cowboy boots, and more, the exhibition highlights the emphasis on the work of black and Native American designers. It will also feature geographic representation of fashion designers and stories from across the country, Crystal Bridges said.

I always view Crystal Bridges as an inclusive storytelling platform, and we are thrilled to present our first fashion exhibition boldly focused on the diverse origins and untold stories of American fashion. Fashion is truly the art of our daily lives, a means of expression and culture, a source of creativity and vision. We are thrilled to bring these voices and stories to the heart of America.

Olivia Walton, chair of the museum’s board of trustees

According to a press release, the exhibition will feature pieces on loan from Vogue magazine’s global editor, Hamish Bowles, as well as other private collections and household names such as Ralph Lauren, Nike, Vera Wang and Levi-Strauss. , alongside statement styles. by designers Virgil Abloh, Carolina Herrera, Patricia Michaels, Virgil Ortiz, Anna Sui and Isabel Toledo.

The first-ever interactive digital garment to be featured in a museum exhibit will also debut through a collaboration with bionic and futuristic pop artist Viktoria Modesta.

“Fashioning America” ​​will also give attendees insight into little-known fashion designers such as Ann Lowe, who designed Jackie Kennedy’s wedding dress, and Bill Whitten, who fashioned Michael Jackson’s iconic glove. The exhibit will also tell stories of female designers and female-led businesses who have found great success in the male-dominated fashion industry, including streetwear designer Olivia Anthony, corset inventor Emmeline Philbrook , entrepreneur Hattie Carnegie and famed underwear designer and industrialist Olga Erteszek.

“American fashion reflects the complexity of America as a whole, weaving together stories of innovation, immigration, independence, self-invention and creativity. The vast history of American fashion encompasses designers from all walks of life – from rural to urban, from regional to global – who embody past and present history and represent issues related to inclusion and exclusion,” said the curator of the exhibition, Michelle. Tolini Finamore “I am honored and delighted to have the opportunity to champion work that has too often been overlooked by convention and hope that the exhibition captures the role that fashion plays in reflecting the spirit American in the rest of the world.”

A lively program will take place during the exhibition and will include an opening conference on September 9 with Finamore and selected designers, panel discussions throughout the exhibition and fashion and design workshops for all ages .

The museum also announces that it will hold a full weekend of public engagements on November 12 and 13 to further explore the exhibition and its themes through lectures, drop-in workshops, fashion pop-ups with emerging designers, a fashion evening and Suite.

Alongside the exhibit, the museum is partnering with the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Inc. (CFDA) to explore issues impacting the future of the American fashion industry and celebrate new talent from around the world. design in the Heartland.

A fashion symposium is also planned in partnership with the CFDA for October 26, which will bring together leading industry voices to celebrate American fashion design and share stories, experiences and ideas on sustainability, diversity , equity and inclusiveness, the statement said.

“Fashioning America” will be in theaters from September 10, 2022 through January 30, 2023.

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