The Victoria & Albert Museum in London will soon present an exhibition that tells the stories of several performers who have become feminist icons, anti-racism campaigners and LGBT champions.
Starting from Saturday until April 7, the "DIVA" show will include more than 250 exhibits, including photographs, posters, magazines, film and video clips, as well as an accompanying soundtrack.
But the focus of the in-depth look at the mould-breaking talents on display is some 60 outfits that defined their distinctive image, according to an AFP report.
On display will be Josephine Baker's sequinned costumes from the early 20th century as well as Stella McCartney's designs for the young American singer Billie Eilish. There are also gowns by major designers worn on the red carpet of film premieres and at award ceremonies.
"From the early 19th century opera singers that commissioned their own couture gowns to the kind of contemporary catwalk, from the Met Gala to the stage, the diva look and the diva expressing themselves through fashion is incredibly important," curator Kate Bailey told AFP.
The exhibition takes visitors on a journey across two centuries of female empowerment, from the first use of the Italian word meaning "goddess" to describe opera greats such as soprano Adelina Patti. She was the best-known woman in 19th-century Britain after Queen Victoria, the AFP report adds.
A major part of the exhibition is devoted to Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe, who was most famously depicted in Andy Warhol's pop art portrait.
"DIVA" chronicles the struggle of these artists to make their way in a man's world and includes a chronology of the parallel evolution of feminism and the creative industries.
"It's diva and power, diva and creativity... having a voice and using that voice and that platform to shift the needle, to do something different, to reinvent, to transform, to inspire," said Bailey.