Threads of History

SCAD FASH Museum of Fashion + Film recently closed its display “Threads of History,” a walk through clothing styles from the 1700s to the 2000s, but continues to house a variety of art exhibits. SCAD FASH, which is a branch of the Savannah College of Art and Design’s experience museum, introduces students, future and current, to the art profession.
The exhibit “Threads of History: 200 Years of Fashion” displayed the changing clothing styles of men, women, and children in Europe and America. The exhibit contains over 5,000 articles of clothing, most of which were supplied to the museum by collector Raffaello Piraino. His antique pieces are placed with multiple articles from SCAD’s permanent collection.
“Threads of History” shows the changing cultural and political states throughout the world, as displayed by the sudden switches in styles. The exhibit directs viewers to the lavishly decorated Rococo era fashions, worn by Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI, which changed dramatically during the French Revolution into simplistic figures and colors.
Much of the exhibit was women’s dresses, which prominently presented the influences of other nations on the people in Europe and America at the time. The intricate embroidery and painting on fabric, as well as the alternating shapes of designs, gave insight into the trends that were followed and dispersed globally, and those that quickly faded.
A portion of “Threads of History” was a short film, “The Milliner.” Created by visual media artist Meagan Cignoli with assistance from SCAD students, this film displayed the changing patterns of millinery and the inspiring movements of hats through the ages. The video integrated stop-motion, music and creative visual effects, and was a light take on fashion and an interesting showcase of student work.
SCAD FASH also currently displays Omar Victor Diop’s “Project Diaspora,” a moving collection of photography that explores the roles of African men in history. Diop himself is the subject of 18 photos, using intricate costumes and settings to transform himself into important but overlooked members of key historical events. In each piece, Diop also carries a soccer ball, whistle, or other athletic gear, representing current social stereotypes faced by black men.
“Project Diaspora” was an impactful exhibition through the way it transformed stereotypes and highlighted the importance of black culture throughout time, creating a platform for power and pride.
SCAD also presents many of its students’ works, both in fashion and visual art. The participants in the fashion programs aim to tweak and perfect their styles to create groundwork for a professional career. Through the halls and nontraditional studio classrooms, artwork covers the walls and tables, showing a variety of styles: graffiti, realism, still life, modernism, sculpture and more. The impressive creations of students shows the passion and influence of SCAD.
SCAD is an impressive venue, decked with museum-worthy creations by students, as well as an impactful selection of famous artwork. The collective workings of SCAD show a dedicated body of artists who transform passion and history into works of art and fashion.