On Friday morning I attended the media preview of NGV’s landmark exhibition 200 Years of Australian Fashion, which opens to the public on Saturday 5 March at NGV Australia in Federation Square (don’t go to St Kilda Rd, like I did).
Stepping in to the exhibition is like entering an enormous dolls house. Dramatically tall white curtains invite you in to teeny rooms and corridors, around corners and through dynamic diorama displays.
Alongside works by contemporary designers, such as Akira, Richard Nylon, Ellery and Toni Maticevski, the exhibition showcases standout designs from the last 200 years including a glamorous 1960 blue feathered ball gown by Collins Street salon La Petite.
This morning Dion Lee unveiled for the first time his exclusive commission for NGV: a four metre-tall, Swarovski crystal-encrusted gown, lit from within and radiating a constellation of light. All the sparkles.
‘It has been such a special experience creating a sculptural work for the National Gallery of Victoria as part of the 200 Years of Australian Fashion retrospective.’
– Dion Lee
Australian fashion legends Linda Jackson and Jenny Kee (pictured above), best known for their Australiana designs, were there to show off the immersive replica of their famed 1980s Flamingo Park boutique, and talk us through their lifelong friendship, and the often spontaneous inspirations behind their collections.
One of my highlights of course, was finally meeting Nadia & Cami of DI$COUNT UNIVERSE as we stood beneath one of their sequinned creations. The exhibition is a well-covered exploration of the last 200 hundreds years of Australian style talent, and is pure joy to uncover.
The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia at Federation Square | 5 March – 31 July 2016 | Exhibition fees apply
Pictured at top: Kym Ellery Photographer: Jake Terrey