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Coventry Kids Make Fashion Statements

Young Coventry people’s views of fashion have gone on display as history comes up to date at the Herbert Art Gallery.

The project, called Street Style, aimed to collect and record contemporary fashions worn by people in Coventry aged between 15 and 25.

The Museum already has a large and important collection of historic costume, dating from around 1800.

However most of this consists of garments which would have been worn by the wealthier members of society and the collection includes very little which dates from after 1970. 

The Street Style project is a way of bringing the collection up to date and, for the first time, concentrating on young people's street fashions.

It will also act as a record for future generations of what people were wearing in the year 2000.

The project has been carried out by Stella Wisdom, who has been on a work placement with the Museum as part of her Museum Studies course at Leicester University.

Stella comes from Coventry and has made contact with college students and youth groups across the city.

This has led to the project reflecting a wide range of styles from the more conventional 'trendy' look to the slightly more 'way out', including goths, skaters and cyber-punks. 

The exhibition, which is part of the Godiva City display, includes interviews which are available for visitors to listen to and photographs.

There are also garments for the museum's collection, including a denim corset, a pink snakeskin-effect top and sandals, Nike trainers, a Ben Sherman shirt, a tongue stud and belly button barbell 

Many of the items featured will eventually become part of a new exhibition called Coventry Lives, which will tell the story of the city in the 20th century using interviews with Coventry people of all generations.

Councillor Joan Wright, Cabinet Member for Cultural and Leisure Services, said:

"I believe that it is really important to ensure that exhibitions, events and activities in the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum appeal to people of all generations and backgrounds in the City.

“We are currently running a series of tea dances that are attended mostly by older people in conjunction with our 'Go To It!' exhibition.

“The Street Style project is part of our work with younger people.  It will bring the history of the city as told by the museum right up to date."
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CWN / Tourism & Leisure / Museums / Herbert Art Gallery & Museum / 2 Jun 00

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