Friday, 2 June

The exhibition “Dressing the body: silhouettes and fashion 1550-2015” opened in 2008 in the Museu del Textil i de la Indumentària in Barcelona with the aim to show how the way we dress has evolved throughout centuries, with clothes modifying the silhouette taking into account actions like reducing, increasing and revealing. With over 100 designs, it’s an exhibition that, almost 10 years later keeps attracting the public, now from the Museu del Disseny (DHUB) opened in Glòries in the end of 2014. In fact, as Silvia Ventosa, co-curator of the exhibition, explains “it’s the most successful exhibition in the museum”, showing the power of attraction of the fashion world.
A decade it’s quite a significant time in an ever-changing and dynamic sector like fashion; that’s why, this spring 2017, the exhibition “Dressing the body” has updated with current designs, many of which born on the 080 Barcelona Fashion runway. Thanks to an agreement between the Catalan Trade, Craftmanship and Fashion Consortium and Museu del Disseny, a sample of each 080 Barcelona Fashion winning collection enters the Museu del Disseny archives and among them, the two curators of the exhibition, Silvia Ventosa and Teresa Bastardes, select the ones that best fit to any of the 5 actions on display at the exhibition: increase, reduce, ellongate, profile and reveal. In total, 12 designs and 7 designers have been added to the Museu del Disseny’s permanent exhibition.
The “Dressing the body” tour is chronological; that’s why the renovation is specially important in the last room, dedicated to contemporary fashion. It’s here where we find now novelties like an XXL wool jumper by Miriam Ponsa –winner of the Best Collection Award in autumn-winter 2013-2014-. Another new look is a yellow design by CARLOTAOMS of their debut collection in spring-summer 2016, for which they won the Best Emerging Design Award and that introduces the agender concept in fashion, different of unisex, as Ventosa clarifies.
Moreover, Krizia Robustella also makes her debut in the museum thanks to a look of her winner collection Road Club Lovers of autumn-winter 2011-2012, which introduces street-wear into the exhibition, alongside a look by Brain & Beast from their spring-summer collection of the same casual style. The emerging Isometric are another novelty with a masculine look of their Psique collection of autumn-winter 2015-16 inspired by traditional tailoring but adapted to the 21st century man. In contrast, designer Celia Vela is also present with a very femenine look of her winner collection in July 2015, that can be related to the classical woman's fashion of the fifties.
In fact, the dialogue between contemporary designs and antique ones is a constant throughout the “Dressing the body” exhibition. In precedent rooms, we can see hundred-year-old dresses next to current designs, signed by the likes of Manuel Bolaño and Txell Miras, to establish a rich and surprising connection that shows how fashion “is cyclic and arbitrary” according to Silvia Ventosa. Other creations that have been added to the exhibition are by established designers like Ailanto, Armand Basi, Lydia Delgado and Sybilla with the aim that past and present of Catalan fashion go hand with hand in “Dressing the body”, the best window to fashion history in Barcelona.