The globalization of fashion has given rise to new fashion cities that now annually host hundreds of fashion weeks around the world. Each city’s cultural identity and particular economic, political, and social circumstances combine to elevate its designers to international attention.
The exhibition opens with a digital style map that geographically locates the fashion capitals and showcases their latest runway and street style photographs. Global Fashion Capitals continues city-by-city, starting with Paris, the birthplace of haute couture, represented by designs from Charles Frederick Worth, Gabrielle Chanel, Christian Dior, and the emerging couturier, Bouchra Jarrar.
The New York section begins with a circa 1938 iridescent evening gown by Nettie Rosenstein and ends with Alexander Wang’s sporty spring/summer 2015 neon orange dress. New York also includes styles by Claire McCardell, Halston, and Ralph Lauren.
Milan claimed its place as Italy’s fashion capital during the 1970s. Brands such as Versace and Prada helped establish the city’s respected prêt-à-porter. Now, newer designers, such as Stella Jean, bring fresh perspectives to Milan.
London captured international attention with “youthquake” fashions during the 1960s. Provocative designers such as Vivienne Westwood, John Galliano, and Alexander McQueen established London as a creative fashion hub during the decades since.
When selecting which emerging fashion capitals to include in the exhibition, the curators considered a number of indicators to show that a city’s fashion scene is growing. All the featured cities are home to forward-thinking designers who have achieved domestic success and attracted international interest. They also hold fashion weeks attended by international press and fashion buyers.
Global Fashion Capitals
The Museum at FIT
June 2 – November 14, 2015