With the Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition at the V&A telling the story of one man and his vision for fashion, it is time for a woman to take the spotlight. The Mary Quant exhibition tells the story of one of England’s most influential fashion designers, with two floors of clothes, shoes, accessories, makeup, photography and film from the V&A’s archives and public loans. London is once again going mad for mods; the V&A’s social campaign rings true, #WeWantQuant.
The V&A has curated the first international retrospective of iconic British designer Mary Quant in almost 50 years. With over 200 garments and accessories including unseen pieces from her archive, the exhibition will explore the years between 1955 and 1975 in which Quant launched a fashion revolution on the British high street. One of Britain’s most influential designers, Quant is known for her bright, playful clothes, from the decade-defining mini skirt to vibrant tights, popularised by the likes of Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton.
The V&A put out a call for contributions to its Mary Quant exhibition using the hashtag #WeWantQuant and received over 1,000 replies from women who had worn and own her pieces. The stories of these women, and photographs of them wearing them, sit alongside the garments in this cheerful, bright show at the V&A, a must-visit alongside the sell-out Dior exhibition also in residence for fashion fans.
The story of the exhibition is of one women who changed the lives of many others through her clothes and the stories they told. It goes beyond the miniskirts and the colourful tights and into the ways she revolutionised the British high street by harnessing new mass production techniques and making fashion more accessible.
“The whole point of fashion is to make fashionable clothes available to everyone.” – Mary Quant
6 April – 16 Feb 2020
V&A, Cromwell Rd, Knightsbridge, London SW7 2RL
Tickets £12, vam.ac.uk