Museum at FIT
Fashion and Textile History Gallery
November 29, 2011–May 8, 2012
The Museum at FIT has long been recognized for its innovative and award-winning exhibitions, but less well-known is the fact that our permanent collection encompasses more than 50,000 garments and accessories and 30,000 textiles dating from the eighteenth century to the present. The museum is organizing two consecutive exhibitions in The Fashion and Textile History Gallery: Fashion, A-Z: Highlights from the Collection of the Museum at FIT, Part One and Fashion, A-Z: Highlights from the Collection of the Museum at FIT, Part Two.
Thematic exhibitions in the Fashion and Textile History Gallery are drawn exclusively from the museum’s permanent collection and have typically been organized chronologically, covering 200 to 250 years of fashion history. Since the Museum at FIT collection is especially strong in designer fashion from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, we decided to organize an exhibition that focuses on modern and contemporary fashion and accessories from the collection. By temporarily breaking away from the chronological format, the museum curators sought to provide a new way of presenting fashion that is compelling to our constituencies, which includes FIT students as well as a diverse viewing public. The fashions on display were organized alphabetically—from Armani, Balenciaga, and Chanel all the way through the alphabet to Vivienne Westwood, Yeohlee, and Zoran—to give visitors a sense of the range of the museum’s holdings in modern and contemporary fashion.
A companion book, published by Taschen in fall 2012, features more than five hundred photographs of fashions from the museum’s collection, as well as photographs of many of our exhibitions.