21 July 2023 – 12 January 2025
Created by influential designers and fashion houses, each outfit represents a ground breaking moment in fashion and includes works by Christian Dior, Elsa Schiaparelli, Azzedine Alaïa, Cristobal Balenciaga, Pierre Cardin, Vivienne Westwood, Yohji Yamamoto, Bruce Oldfield and Alexander McQueen.
This exhibition celebrates pioneering creativity and design. The two main themes of the show are: investigating the links between fashion and emotions, in the form of dopamine dressing which encourages dressing for joy, and focusing on repair and restoration, inviting us to consider the lifecycle of a garment and the way it is valued and cared for.
The exhibition will reveal the recent restoration of a 1930s silk velvet jacket by Italian couturier Elsa Schiaparelli, Unpicking Couture promotes sustainable approaches to repairing and preserving much loved and well-worn clothes.
The garments will be on display for the first time. They were acquired through a National Heritage Lottery Fund Collecting Cultures grant from 2015-20.
Unpicking Couture will expose the work that underpins the care of dress collections through a mediative time-lapse film that captures the process of dress mounting and how the craft and skill involved, mirrors the work of dressmakers and couturiers.
Innovative display techniques have been developed in conjunction with Dr. Jeff Horsley from the Centre for Fashion Curation, London College of Fashion including dynamic visual and spatial strategies and a focus on the making of the exhibition. These lively modes of presentation provide encounters for fashion as stimulation and immersion, enabling slow looking and inspiring conversation. Part display and part studio space, Unpicking Couture activates ideas around the value and care of collections, sustainability, expression of self, making and creativity.
- Opening times: open 10am–5pm, Wednesday–Sunday
- Location Manchester Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Manchester M2 3JL
- How to get there: By Metrolink – St Peter’s Square or Market Street stations are the nearest Metrolink stations-both are on the Altrincham and Eccles lines; By Bus – Nearest bus stops are in Piccadilly Gardens or on Princess Street; By Train – to Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road or Manchester Victoria stations – take the Metrolink from Victoria or Piccadilly (Altrincham or Eccles direction) to Market Street or St Peter’s Square; By Car – parking is available at the NCP car parks on Chepstow Street, Faulkner Street or Sackville Street – all are within five minutes of the gallery
- Further information 0161 235 8888