Fashion Reimagined: Themes and Variations, 1700–Now

Giles. Dec. 2022. 144p. ISBN 9781913875169. $34.95. DEC ARTS
Fashion highlights from the last 250-plus years are the focus of this exhibition catalogue. It includes 50 garments drawn from the extensive fashion collection at North Carolina’s Mint Museum. Curated to celebrate the fashion collection’s 50th anniversary, the color photographs and accompanying text focus on the historicism of each garment as well as the designer, fabrication, and garment construction. Photographs and annotations are organized into three broad themes: minimalism; pattern and decoration; and the body reimagined. Examples of haute couture and ready-to-wear are included, with designers from Italy, France, England, India, Spain, Japan, Netherlands, and the United States. The author/contributors, all experts in their respective fields, include Mint Museum staffers Carlano (senior curator) and Ellen C. Walker (director, library and archives); Lauren D. Whitley (senior curator emerita, Boston Museum of Fine Arts); and fashion designer Anna Sui. The book includes a selected bibliography.
VERDICT A must for collections supporting fashion, design, theater, or costuming. The insightful, well-researched annotations highlight the historical and cultural context of each garment, including the associated fashion trend, global textile history, designer, and garment construction. The photography, with close-up insets of unique patterns and decoration, is well done.
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