Fashion is one of our most significant cultural artifacts — an expression of our values and fascinations, and an impression of a moment in time with social, political, and economic dimensions. Yet because much of its printed matter is created for commercial or informal ends, it rarely receives the thorough study it deserves. Ultimately there is a need for intellectual enterprise, new narratives and a healthy collective environment to interact with the actual production and positioning of fashion.
Founded in 2020, the Library will become the world’s most comprehensive repository of specialized fashion research and contemporary fashion publications. We will fill a much-needed gap in the preservation of and critical engagement with fashion’s printed culture at an institutional level, and build a free, globally accessible resource for fashion researchers, industry professionals, and amateur enthusiasts. International Library of Fashion Research is actively working not only to preserve fashion’s past, but to understand its present and contribute to its future.
The library’s foundation is based on a seed donation of 5,000+ pieces of contemporary printed matter dating from 1975 until present. It includes books, magazines, lookbooks, show invitations, illustrations, ephemera, acquired from various private collectors. The collection will continue to grow via further donations from global fashion houses, publishers and practitioners, animated by an extensive program of talks, digital annotations and micro-curations.
International Library of Fashion Research will open physically in the dedicated venue of "Stasjonsmesterboligen", located on the campus of the newly built and prestigious 55,000 square metres National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design in Oslo, Norway. While continuing to operate independently, this agreement reasserts the library in its purpose to defend its critical engagement in fashion printed culture at an institutional level. Opening in 2022.
Elise By Olsen
Else Skålvoll Thorenfeldt
Steven Mark Klein
Vésma Kontere McQuillan
The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design
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