‘Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear’ Unpacks the Aesthetics of Gender

Posted inDesign News

The world of men’s fashion is reaching new levels of creativity and ingenuity, particularly as the long-held gender binary continues to be blurred and dismantled. The Victoria & Albert Museum in London is celebrating these exciting new directions with the exhibition, Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear. It will be open to the public starting tomorrow, March 19, until November 6.

The exhibition explores and dissects the fashion world’s evolving relationship with gender. Designers, tailors, and artists have quite literally created the sartorial elements central to the varied performances of masculinity. The show lays bare the multiplicity of gender through presenting fluid, beautiful building blocks of menswear across centuries and cultures.

New Adventures, Spitfire – an advertisement divertissement. Director & Choreographer Matthew Bourne. Costume Designer Lez Brotherston. Associate Artistic Director Etta Murfitt. Dancers Will Bozier, Harrison Dowzell, Glenn Graham, Andrew Monaghan, Liam Mower, Dominic North. Featured in Dancing Nation by Sadler’s Wells & BBC Arts, January 2021. Photo: Kaasam Aziz

The show comprises 100 looks and artworks presented across three V&A galleries: Undressed, Overdressed, and Redressed. Contemporary works on display include pieces from the Nigerian menswear brand Orange Culture, fashion designers Grace Wales Bonner and Nicholas Daley, and photographer Omar Victor Diop, among many others. 

The exhibit displays modern pieces alongside beloved historical works from V&A’s collections, such as classical sculptures, Renaissance paintings, photographs, and films. The show will also feature an all-male dance performance by Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures.

Fashioning Masculinities will also feature themed museum events, including a menswear tailoring workshop, a street photography workshop, and a members-only virtual discussion with the curators.