Contemporary Muslim Fashions is the first major museum exhibition to explore the complex, diverse nature of Muslim dress codes worldwide. The exhibition examines how Muslim women—those who cover their heads and those who do not—have become arbiters of style within and beyond their communities, and in so doing have drawn mass media attention to contemporary Muslim life.
Spotlighting places, garments, and styles from around the world, this exhibition considers how Muslims define themselves—and are defined—by their dress, and how these sartorial choices can reflect the multifaceted nature of their identities. The exhibition traverses different religious interpretations and cultures, including high-end fashions, such as those by Malaysia-based Blancheur; street wear, such as modest designs from London-based Sarah Elenany; sportswear, such as the burkini; and commissioned garments from both emerging and established designers. Including social media as primary material, Muslim voices and personal narratives are framed by runway footage, news clips, and documentary and fashion photography.