While Minoan dress rivalled that of its Eastern and Egyptian neighbours, Aegean costumes and textiles have been among the least understood of the major artistic achievements of the Minoan civilisation.
Helping to shed light on this narrative is the Hellenic Museum.
Teaming up with Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival, this year the Museum will host the exhibition ‘Haute Couture in Ancient Greece: The Spectacular Costumes of Ariadne & Helen’.
Debuting in Australia direct from the United States, the collection is made up of garments worn by Minoans and Mycenaeans from Bronze Age Greece (2000 to 1200 BC), which have been recreated by Dr Bernice Jones.
Dr Jones’ specialisation is in interconnections between the Aegean and the Near East in the Bronze Age, with a particular focus on Minoan and Mycenaean dress and textiles, and the garments are the result of meticulous analysis of textiles represented in sculptures and wall paintings of the period.
The exhibition includes explanatory drawings of the construction of the garments and hand-woven linen samples of the garments’ cloth patterns, bands and trim.
Fittingly the Museum will be launching the exhibition in style, with an exclusive party on Friday 2 March.
The special runway event will see models displaying the Minoan and Mycenaean garments to show the full effect of the multifaceted nature of the works, and will be accompanied by a projection installation of frescoes, and an explanation of the clothes, their history, design and manufacture.
To follow, attendees will indulge in an ancient-inspired cocktail party with free flowing champagne, wines and beers from Greece, along with a selection of canapes, followed by a preview of the exhibition.
The exhibition will be on show at the Hellenic Museum (280 William St, Melbourne, VIC) launching on Friday 2 March from 6.30-10.30 pm. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit hellenic.org.au/haute-couture-in-ancient-greece