Cultural Heritage and the Making of Contemporary Fashion

This guide was produced to accompany the British Council touring exhibition Reconstruction: Cultural Heritage and the Making of Contemporary Fashion.

The exhibition celebrates the work of seven of the UK’s leading fashion designers whose work embodies elements of their respective pasts – either personal moments or a collective cultural heritage – to create contemporary garments with narrative.

Although fashion is deeply entwined with personal identity, it can also hold within its fabric whole histories and cultures.

Included in this guide is the work of some of British fashion’s most internationally renowned designers – Paul Smith, Vivienne Westwood, Hussein Chalayan and Sophia Kokosalaki, Peter Jensen, Marios Schwab and Osman Yousefzada.

The work in the exhibition and guide offers a snapshot of some of the traditions and cultures inspiring these celebrated UK-based designers.

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