Fashion, History, Museums
Inventing the Display of Dress
The last decade has seen the growing popularity and visibility of fashion as a cultural product, including its growing presence in museum exhibitions. This book explores the history of fashion displays, highlighting the continuity of past and present curatorial practices. Comparing and contrasting exhibitions from different museums and decades—from the Paris Exposition Universelle of 1900 to the Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2011, and beyond—it makes connections between museum fashion and the wider fashion industry.
By critically analyzing trends in fashion exhibition practice over the 20th and early 21st centuries, Julia Petrov defines and describes the varied representations of historical fashion within British and North American museum exhibitions. Rooted in extensive archival research on exhibitions by global leaders in the field—from the Victoria and Albert and the Bath Fashion Museum to the Brooklyn and the Royal Ontario Museums—the work reveals how fashion exhibitions have been shaped by the values and anxieties associated with fashion more generally.
Supplemented by parallel critical approaches, including museological theory, historiography, body theory, material culture, and visual studies, Fashion History in the Museum demonstrates that in an increasingly corporate and mass-mediated world, fashion exhibitions must be analysed in a comparative and global context. Richly illustrated with 70 images, this book is essential reading for students and scholars of fashion history and museology, as well as curators, conservators, and exhibition designers.
Table of contents
- Acknowledgments pp. xii–xiv
- Introduction: Fashion as Museum Object pp. 1–12
- Foundation Garments: Precedents for Fashion History Exhibitions in Museums pp. 13–30
- Window Shopping: Commercial Inspiration for Fashion in the Museum pp. 31–62
- The New Objectivity: Social Science Methods for the Display of Dress pp. 63–90
- Intervisuality: Displaying Fashion as Art pp. 91–112
- Tableaux Vivants: The Influence of Theater pp. 113–136
- The Body in the Gallery: Revivifying Historical Fashion pp. 137–166
- The Way of All Flesh: Displaying the Historicity of Historical Fashion pp. 167–184
- The New Look: Contemporary Trends in Fashion Exhibitions pp. 185–198
- Back matter