March 1, 2007

The Role of the Museum

I just read about "New York Fashion Now," an upcoming exhibit at the V&A museum, on On their website, the exhibit is described as:
'New York Fashion Now' will showcase clothes and accessories from a range of New York's emerging fashion talent. The display will feature twenty dynamic young design labels (most of them launched within the past three to seven years) such as Zac Posen, Maggie Norris, Thom Brown, Mary Ping and Derek Lam. It will chart the contributions each has made to the changing face of the fashion industry in one of the world's most powerful fashion capitals. Outfits will include elegant sportswear, new menswear, expressions of craft, avant-garde design and examples of the synergy between celebrity and fashion.
The show runs from April 17 to 23 Sept of this year, and admission is free.

For some reason, shows like this really bother me. I don't know how much is curating something worthwhile, and how much it is about copying the Met and having "blockbuster" shows that increase attendance. For me, not be an academic snob, museum exhibitions should be somehow more special than something that could've been put together on the sales floor at Barneys, except that the pieces are several seasons apart. Geography aside, the focus of seems broad to me, the choices of designers bizarre (What about Proenza? Should I know who Mary Ping is?), and I am not sure how the curator(s) will spin their research into something MORE than "a bunch of pretty clothes from NY designers."

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