Re-imagining our Fashion Gallery
Celebrating clothing worn across cultures to mark significant life events
When Gunnersbury Park Museum reopened to the public in May 2018 following our huge restoration project, we were delighted to show off our new themed gallery spaces. Our new galleries spread across three floors enabled us to display a wider variety of objects and enhanced environmental and security equipment allowed us to exhibit some of the jewels of our collection.
Four years on from our reopening we are starting to re-image our permanent galleries, rotating displays to give our visitors new things to discover every time they visit and to preserve collections sensitive to environmental damage.
We begin with our Fashion Gallery, with a new theme exploring the clothing worn across cultures to mark significant life events such as weddings or coming of age ceremonies. In addition to displaying historic costume from our collection (such as a stunning silk wedding gown and accessories from the 1930s which will appear after some conservation work), Senior Curator Julia Tubman-Jarvis and Communities Programmes Officer Jennal Amin have been working with communities across Ealing and Hounslow to ensure the gallery is representative the population of our two boroughs.
We worked with film-maker Narvir Singh to document the stories of the people who have loaned and donated objects for display so we can hear in their own words why these outfits are so special. We also worked with donors to write the labels for their clothing and they have advised us on how these outfits should be mounted and displayed.
In this first phase of this project, we travel to Central and South Asia with a traditional Afghan woman’s costume, Sangeet’s groom’s outfit from his traditional Punjabi wedding and an embroidered phulkari which holds memories of Jagdish’s Grandmother. Future phases of this project will explore traditional Somali costume and memories of a young man’s Bar Mitzvah in partnership with Ealing Synagogue. We are also seeking funding for more of our historic costume collection to be returned from storage, conserved and put on display.
Immerse yourself in the stories behind these wonderful objects and then come and see them in person when the Fashion Gallery reopens in mid-June.
We would like to thank:
The Afghanistan & Central Asian Association
Sangeet Singh Bains
Mindu Bains & Mohinder Dasanjh
This project has been made possible with funding from Arts Council England through Museum Development London.