Cross-cultural Costume Connections
22 November 2015
Devon costume collections are the inspiration for a new exhibition at the Barnfield Theatre. Exploring Changing Fashion Across Cultures (23 November to 21 December) features artworks inspired by the collections at RAMM, Killerton House and Devonshire Collection of Period Costume in Totnes along with photography, historical and cultural information, and handcrafted wall-hangings. Created by people from more than 15 different countries who live in Devon, the exhibition tells tales of fashion heritage from all over the world.
The exhibition marks the culmination of a six month project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. It has been delivered by Devon Grapevine and Olive Tree, in partnership with Hikmat Devon cic and Refugee Support Devon. The project engaged 32 people from more than 15 different countries, offering participants the chance to learn about British and worldwide fashion history, and to reflect on the relationship between dress and identity. It has also had a significant social impact, using heritage to combat social isolation and bridge cultural division.
During the project, the group enjoyed curator-led tours of the collections at RAMM, Killerton House and the Devonshire Collection of Period Costume in Totnes. Each trip was followed by a workshop, where group members explored how and why fashion changes through discussion, object handling, and creative reflection upon personal and cultural experiences of clothing.
The Barnfield Theatre is open between 10am to 4pm on Monday to Friday and 10am to 2pm on Saturdays.
World Cultures curator Tony Eccles explains the significance of pattern and colour on items in RAMM’s beadwork collection (Image: Clive Chilvers of Meridian Raw)