Is Fashion Modern?: MoMA to have a fashion exhibit in 2017

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City Museum is set to have a fashion exhibit–its first in more than seven decades (72 years, to be exact). 

The exhibit will try to answer the question “Is Fashion Modern?”, addressing the ways that relevant fashion items are designed, manufactured, and distributed.

According to a post on the museum’s website, the exhibited items will consist of “99 garments and accessories that have had a strong impact on history and society in the 20th and 21st centuries, and that continue to hold currency today.”

It adds: “Designs as well known, transformative, and coveted as Levi’s 501s, the Casio watch, and the Little Black Dress, and as ancient and culturally charged as the kippah and the keffiyeh, allow us to explore multivalent issues that these items have contributed to, produced, and shaped over many decades.”

MoMA said that each item will explore these three things: archetype, stereotype, and prototype.

“Historically, the museum has deliberately chosen not to engage with fashion in its galleries or its repositories, wary of those most antimodern terms with which it is often derided: ephemeral, seasonal, faddish,” said MoMA’s department of architecture and design senior curator Paola Antonelli.

This the the NY museum’s first major show devoted to dress since 1944, when architect/designer Bernard Rudofsky curated “Are Clothes Modern?”

This exhibit will start at the end of 2017. The launch event, however, is on May 2016. “Well, we are a museum,” Antonelli said. “We always take things slow.”