Clothing from 1700

Women's, men's and children's clothing from the 18th to the 20th century

The exhibition features around 300 original pieces of clothing spanning three centuries, illustrating fashion trends and their manifold social connections. A chronologically ordered tour draws out the leitmotifs of men's and women's clothing from 1700 to 1970. A second tour departs from chronology and looks into selected themes of clothing culture. Twenty large display cases present underwear, swimwear fashions, children's clothes, features of regional dress, emergency clothing in wartime and the post-war years, wedding garments, headgear, shoes and the political appropriation of clothing. They provide an insight into forms and modes of wear, materials, production and the social symbolism of clothing. One highpoint is the joint presentation of "fashion" and "regional dress": the unique rural dress that emerged in the 19th century is shown as the antithesis to urbanization and industrialization and contextualized within the history of clothing.

The exhibition, entitled "Changing clothes", was opened in 2002 and investigates changes in fashions, whilst simultaneously utilizing a new information and exhibition concept. The presentation without narrative units or staging provides the foundation for an open and diversified perception of the objects. It emphasizes clothing as a historical source and does so without museum additions, even when gaps arise where objects have not survived. The regional dress of the 19th century is shown on its first figurines from 1905. For all other garments, a new type of figurine was developed and produced, which both ensures the items are correctly preserved and enables optimum adaptation to the historical silhouettes.


Examples of objects

Abendpumps aus Goldleder
um 1910

Festliches Kleid im „griechischen Schnitt“
um 1800

Meraner Weinberghüter („Saltner“)
1825/1905

„Grosser Auftritt“, Kleid-Objekt aus Berliner Telefonbüchern
Stephan Hann, Berlin, 1985


Exhibition rooms

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