Museums have discovered fashion, says NYTPosted: April 25, 2011
Once viewed as mere commercial fluff, fashion has gained a foothold in the curatorial heart. More and more institutions in recent years have turned to exhibitions of clothes to engage patrons and provide new perspectives on history and the arts.
Geraldine Fabrikant at The New York Times reports:
Harold Koda, the curator in charge of the Met Costume Institute, believes that there has been what he called “a generational shift,” adding: “Until about 10 years ago, there was an uneasy relationship between museums and fashion. But today there are more museum directors who are engaging in contemporary fashion.”
The big-city shows have helped legitimize fashion for smaller museums and provide a template for how to raise funds. And pop culture highlights fashion’s allure. “A hit show like ‘Project Runway,’ whose viewers are young females, underscores the passion for fashion among a key demographic that is also crucial for museums,” said Tyler Green, who edits the blog Modern Art Notes.
The Met’s Costume Institute has been putting on fashion exhibitions for years, not to mention the Museum at FIT (which has an interesting exhibition on sports clothes coming up at the end of May). Is the clothing-in-museums-fad really something new?