Do you remember the tuxedo by Christian Siriano, worn by Billy Porter? And the shiny black suit of Timothée Chalamet designed by Haider Ackermann for the premier of Dune at the Venice Film Festival? We’ll see them on the catwalk in the exhibition Fashioning Masculinities: The Art of Menswear among the approximately one-hundred styles by legendary designers, emerging talents, historic treasures of the collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum and exceptional loans, including classical sculptures, Renaissance paintings, iconic photos and potent performances. From the styles of Gucci, Harris Reed, Grace Wales Bonner and Raf Simons to the paintings of Sofonisba Anguissola up to the works of Robert Longo, the exhibition takes a raw look at masculinity in its multiple shades, from the Renaissance to today. Opening Fashioning Masculinities is a piece by Craig Green, a deconstructed suit that winks at the deconstruction of the male body and the conventions of masculinity, the through-line of the entire exhibition. While Undressed explores the body and intimate apparel in a Utopian dream, Overdressed rummages through the closets of elite males, populated by oversizes, silk, velvet, audacious colours and symbolic motifs. In this section, silk suits and ample capes flank a sculpture by Gibbons that imitates a Venetian lace tie displayed next to a cloak by Dolce & Gabbana and a painting by Sofonisba Anguissola.
Cartoon masterpieces meet the objects that inspired them in an exhibition full of surprises.