Exhibits showcase history of fashion


Rachel Liquindoli

“China: Through the Looking Glass” will be presented at the Met from May 7 through August 16.

Natalia Barr, Contributing Writer

For fashion enthusiasts, New York City provides access to some of the world’s best exhibitions and opportunities to become immersed in the fashion industry. This spring and summer, many of the city’s museums will hold exhibits to teach viewers about the history and culture of fashion, all at little to no cost.

Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin

The Museum of Arts and Design is opening the first-ever exhibition on renowned designer Ralph Pucci, who is recognized for his original and innovative approach to the the typical mannequin. Though many people think of mannequins as vessels to display other artists’ work, Pucci sought to give more meaning to the mannequin. Through his independent work and collaborations with other designers like Diane von Furstenberg and Anna Sui, Pucci’s mannequins explored the notion of the supermodel: a mannequin with life and personality. This exhibit offers over 30 of Pucci’s mannequins, an in-gallery recreation of his sculpture studio and jewelry designed by Isabel and Ruben Toledo on some of Ruben’s surrealist mannequins. General admission is $16 and student admission is $12.

Global Fashion Capitals

Beginning June 2, the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology will present this exhibit on the rise of fashion cities around the world, including London, New York, Milan and Paris. Fashion weeks have also been appearing in other cities around the world, bringing attention to cities such as Stockholm, Istanbul and Shanghai. The exhibit will display over 70 pieces by designers from cities on the rise in the fashion world. The show will explore global fashion trends and the factors that play a part in helping a city to establish international recognition in the fashion industry. Admission is free.

China: Through the Looking Glass

Opening May 7, this highly-anticipated exhibit at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a collaboration with the Department of Asian Art, will explore how Chinese aesthetics have influenced Western fashion for centuries. The exhibit will display over 100 examples of designer pieces alongside Chinese costumes, sculptures, paintings and films to show China’s influence and representation in Western art. Recommended admission for students is $12.

Matthew Weiner’s “Mad Men”

This exhibit at the Museum of the Moving Image explores the creative process behind AMC’s acclaimed television show Mad Men. The show is often regarded for its excellent costumes, and more than 25 of these outfits, as well as props and other visuals from the show, will be on display. General admission is $12, but NYU students can see it for free with an NYU ID.

Gilded New York

The Museum of the City of New York is holding this ongoing exhibition, sponsored by the Tiffany & Co. Foundation, to explore New York in the 19th century, when the elite sought to flaunt their riches through fashion, architecture and interior design. The exhibit displays over 100 pieces, including costumes, jewelry, portraits and other decorations created from the mid-1870s to the early 20th century. General admission is $14, but NYU students can view the exhibit for free with an NYU ID.

A version of this article appeared in the April 29 print edition.  Email Natalia Barr at [email protected]