Friday, June 18, 2010

On Now - Major Hat Exhibition at Queensland Art Gallery

Admission - Free

March 27 - June 27 2010

Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane.

As a great treat for Australians, millinery fans and fashionista's alike the Queensland Art Gallery has acquired an exclusive exhibition direct from London's Victoria & Albert Museum.  Exploring the Art of Millinery, 'Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones' is the spectacular result of a collaboration between the V & A's extensive collection and from famed milliner Stephen Jones' own archive of beautiful and amazing creations.  (Many of which have been featured on the catwalks of major designers such as Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier and Vivienne Westwood and in the pages of the fashion magazines.)

Image - Stephen Jones for Christian Dior.  Copyrite Christopher Moore Catwalking

Stephen Jones, considered one of the foremost milliners in the world was in Brisbane for the launch which began on March 27 and runs until June 27 2010.  (not long to go folk's!)  QLD Art Gallery Director Tony Ellwood says the exhibition includes 250 hats and iconic headpieces.  A twelfth century egyptian fez rubs shoulders with an elaborate headpiece worn by our own Kylie Minogue during her Showgirls tour, a seventeenth century Doge's hat with a stunning wide-brimmed black silk tulle hat from Christian Dior's first collection in 1948.

Mr Ellwood enthuses that 'Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones' explores the world of millinery from the inside out.  "It follows the life of a hat through the stages of inspiration and creation to the salon and, finally, to the client who gives it ultimate purpose and flourish," he said.  "Visitors are encouraged to engage in the whimsy and frivolity of hats, and also to learn about their personal, cultural and historical significance."

Other included gems are a black felt beret worn by Marlene Dietrich in the movie 'Witness for the Prosecution' in 1957, designed by Elsa Schiaparelli, Phillip Treacy's wedding headpiece worn by Camilla Parker Bowles in her 2005 wedding to Prince Charles and hats worn by Mick Jagger.  Mr Ellwood said that art museums world-wide approached fashion design as an integral part of contemporary visual culture.  "We're very pleased to present this important international exhibition from the V & A at the Queensland Art Gallery for local and national audiences to enjoy," he said.

With not long left to see this fabulous must-see exhibition we recommend taking some time to view this breathtaking array of historical and contemporary hats while there is still time.  Our verdict is that it is a veritable feast for the eyes and well worth a visit. 

For more information about this event please refer to the QLD Art Gallery website.

Have you seen this event or would you like to?  We would love to know your thoughts about this exhibition and millinery in general, please feel free to leave a comment.

(Following 'Hats' the Queensland Art Gallery will present another fashion blockbuster, Valentino, Retrospective: Past/Present/Future, showing at the Gallery of Modern Art -GOMA)


  1. It's a pity people don't wear nice hats more often today. Haven't seen it but hope to.

  2. You should it's well worth a visit :-) Thanks for your comment, let us know what you think if you do check it out.