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The Frick Pittsburgh ‘Special Edition Exhibit’ Undressed

The Frick Pittsburgh ‘undressed’ me mentally and now I physically never want to get dressed again.

Christina Jeter

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I just got the best history lesson in fashion and underwear at The Frick Pittsburgh, the museum is located on five acres of beautifully landscaped lawns and gardens in the city’s historic East End. Known as one of the best preserved ‘Gilded Age Mansions’ in America, it was also family home to American industrialist, financier, union-buster, and art patron Henry Clay Frick. Organized by the London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, ‘Undressed: A History of Fashion in Underwear‘ Pittsburgh exhibition runs through October 21, 2017 – January 7, 2018.


Fashion has always made a statement and lingerie is just an adjunct of that accessory each individual adds on to their body, whether it be worn as clothing, undergarments, or PJs. “The exhibition beautifully illustrates how undergarments reflect society’s changing ideas about the body, morality, and sex, and how underwear styles reflect and shape the body to society’s current fashionable ideal.”

Lingerie makes me feel sexy, empowered and identifies my personal style and one of the exhibit photographs and its history exemplified that from a male’s point of view. Jennie Baptiste a UK photographer captures images that explores fashion and style expressed through black British lifestyles, her portrait of musician Brixton Boyz shirtless, with sagging pants exposing his boxers explores the history of ‘Sagging’ and how it is believed to originate from American prisoners, who wore their trousers low as a result of belts being forbidden in prison.

The exhibition includes key designers and manufacturers from all periods and concludes with an array of styles representing some of today’s most notable designers, including Elie Saab, Alexander McQueen, and Agent Provocateur, which made me wish Pittsburgh had an AP because I always wanted to own one of their pink uniform dress shirts!

“Whether museum visitors are fascinated by the history of clothing, bewitched by luxury fabrics and trimmings, interested in contemporary fashion design, or intrigued by the broader cultural issues that are reflected in our underwear, ‘Undressed‘ will provide a fascinating (and occasionally flirtatious) look at garments that are typically not seen, while illuminating how trends in undergarments reveal things about ourselves.”

My only downfall at the museum was having to turn in my creatively designed ticket sub at the end of the exhibition, which resembled a paper clip and came in different colors depending on your age and I assuming coordinated with the event being promoted. But I did complete the survey about my experience in hopes to have a chance to win author Edwina Ehrman 112- page paperback, ‘Undressed: A Brief History of Underwear.’ And I enjoyed visiting the gift shop which entailed a lounge area, more fashion/lingerie artifacts, great scenery of the garden and architect with inspired items to purchase from their showcases.

The public should call 412-371-0600 or visit TheFrickPittsburgh.org for more information about ‘The Frick Pittsburgh Undressed Exhibition‘.

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