If you happen to find yourself in Melbourne between now and the end of October this year, well, first of all I’m extremely envious, but secondly you should definitely go to the ManStyle exhibition at the NGV International gallery.
ManStyle looks at menswear from the eighteenth century to the present day, and it’s a great introductory tour if, like me, you take a passing interest in men’s fashion, but don’t have real in-depth knowledge. As well as historical pieces like an English brocade coat and a French embroidered three piece silk suit there’s plenty on show by modern names you’ll know. A ridiculously flowery Sanderson suit stands next to a ludicrously bright velvet Commes des Garcons suit, demonstrating that menswear isn’t all about conformity. In fact, my favourite look from the exhibit is by a designer who is often credited for reviving androgyny for the Noughties, Hedi Slimane. I don’t know many men who could get away with wearing a long grey Dior Homme cape and purple silk pussybow blouse, in fact I think more women could, and I guess therein lies a large part of the appeal of this exhibition: deciding which pieces I’d like to steal for myself.
ManStyle is on at NGV International until 30 October 2011. Entry is free. All the details are right here.