The debate about the role of curation has been exaggerated by the recent developments in exhibition design, particularly contemporary fashion exhibited in museums and public gallery spaces.
What informs the two roles is the extensive research that precedes a fashion exhibition. Whether its researching a particular private collection, or situating a collection in cultural history, it’s the role of the curator to give meaning to the objects in the exhibition.
The recent contribution to the field of conceptual fashion design by Professor Judith Clark has highlighted the changing role of the curator. Judith studied as an architect and therefore space and the exhibition display elements are very important to her installations. Her work has set new benchmarks for fashion curation, and the scope of the profession.
Having studied an MA in Fashion Curation (at London College of Fashion) I have been lucky enough to learn the skills of curation and collecting from some of the most notable specialists including Professor Amy de la Haye, Centre of Fashion Curation at UAL, and Professor Claire Wilcox, Senior Curator at the V&A and Chair in Fashion Curation at the UAL.
This is a very exciting time to be working with fashion exhibition ideas, especially as fashion designers are recognising the benefits of archiving their previous collections. Commercial archives like The Horse Hospital have put me in touch with private collectors such as Roger Burton, who has had a very exciting career in the music and film business.