Starting this December, the Metropolitan Museum of Art will celebrate the creativity and artistic legacy of women designers.
The museum has announced its Costume Institute’s fall exhibition, titled Women Dressing Women, which will be on view at The Met Fifth Avenue from 7 December to 3 March.
Featuring about 80 objects, the show will focus on designers whose fashions are represented in the museum’s permanent collection. Designers whose work will be on view include Rei Kawakubo for Comme des Garçons, Adèle Henriette Nigrin Fortuny, Gabriela Hearst, Ann Lowe, Claire McCardell, Pia Davis and Autumn Randolph for No Sesso, Miuccia Prada, Madeleine Vionnet, and Vivienne Westwood, among others.
According to the press release, “Women Dressing Women will offer a new interpretation of the traditional canon of fashion history and examine the ways in which the (fashion) industry has served as a powerful vehicle for women’s social, financial, and creative autonomy. Discoveries about the identities, mentorship histories, and connections between women makers throughout history will be explored, providing new insights and an enhanced understanding of their work.”
Max Hollein, The Met’s Marina Kellen French Director and CEO, said in the press notes: “This timely exhibition will invite visitors to reflect on the vital contributions of women to fashion from the early 20th century to the present through The Costume Institute’s incomparable collection. Women Dressing Women will also continue the Museum’s dedication to amplifying historically underappreciated voices while celebrating the work of those who have become household names. The spectacular garments on view will inspire a renewed appreciation for the multidisciplinary talents at the heart of this vibrant art form and for the countless women whose contributions were, and continue to be, the lifeblood of the global fashion industry we see today.”
Mellissa Huber, Associate Curator, The Costume Institute, added: “Our fall exhibition will provide an opportunity to engage with the critical histories of innovative women designers, all of whom played pivotal roles in the conception of fashion as we know it today. In recognizing that the contributions of women to fashion are unquantifiable, our intention with this show is to celebrate and acknowledge through a focus on The Costume Institute’s permanent collection, which represents a rich timeline of Western fashion history. We hope that this exhibition will foster impactful conversations between our visitors and across the designers’ larger bodies of work, highlighting the plurality and diversity of women’s important contributions to the field.”