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We wear culture

August 10, 2017

The Robert & Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection (FHCC) has collaborated with Google and hundreds of world renowned cultural institutions to bring 3,000 years of the world's fashion together in the largest virtual exhibition of style. The "We wear culture" project by Google Arts & Culture is a collaboration between the FHCC and over 180  institutions from New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, S ão Paulo and around the world. View over 400 online exhibitions and stories sharing a total of 30,000 photos and videos; 4 virtual reality experiences of iconic fashion pieces; over 700 ultra high-resolution, gigapixel images, and over 40 venues offering backstage access on Google Street View.

Using state of the art technology, We wear culture allows you to explore everything from the ancient Silk Road, through the courtly fashion of Versailles, to British punk and the stories behind the clothes you wear today. Iconic pieces that changed the way generations dressed, such as Marilyn Monroe's high heels or the Black Dress by Chanel are brought to life in virtual reality. The Givenchy designed gown for Princess Grace of Monaco, which can be found in the FHCC's collection, is now available online as part of the global exhibition.

The virtual exhibition is a limitless treasure-trove of fashion-centric information that serves as a conduit to numerous fields of research and study. Click through the website to learn about clothing trends throughout history, like ripped jeans, hoodies, and the once controversial bikini; watch how a shoe or traditional kimono is made; learn about the inception of art and fashion through the styling of Frida Kahlo and Schiaparelli's connection to Surrealism; and get inspired by trendsetters like Karl Lagerfeld, Queen Sirkit of Thailand, and Iris van Herpen, among others. 

Fashion experts, curators and designers as well as universities, museums and NGOs from around the world collaborated on the exhibition to show that fashion is a part of our culture, a form of art and a result of true craftsmanship. Google's state-of-the-art technology, including virtual reality, 360 degree videos, Street View and ultra-high resolution "gigapixel" images were used to preserve the collections and make them universally available. "Partnering with Google Arts & Culture allows us take a new path in granting access to the Fox Collection," said Michael Shepherd, the FHCC Archives Specialist. "Garments that may rarely, if ever, be on display physically can now be viewed by site goers at any time of the day, with the incredible ability to zoom in on details that you may not get to see in person.  The platform also allows for us to digitally preserve our physical exhibitions, as well as giving us the potential for increased collaboration between institutions, as it shines a light on wonderful collections that may have been previously unknown to many."

Highlights available online from the FHCC include over 160 objects, including garments by Callot Soeurs, Alexander Wang, James Galanos, and many other esteemed designers; high resolution photos that allow the user to zoom in to explore the details of a garment; and three online exhibitions that help tell the story of costume history, as well as the history of the FHCC.


About FHCC:

The Robert and Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection is dedicated to educating and inspiring through the documentation, exhibition, and preservation of historic costume.

About Google Arts & Culture:

Google Arts & Culture puts over a thousand museums at your fingertips. It's a new, immersive way to explore art, history and wonders of the world. Following projects that made Street Art, Performing Arts and Natural History accessible to people all over the world, We wear culture allows everyone to explore the world of fashion. The Google Arts & Culture app is free and available on the web, on iOS and Android. The Google Arts & Culture team is an innovation partner for cultural institutions. The team works on technologies that help preserve and share culture and allow curators to create engaging exhibitions online and offline, inside museums.