This exhibition explores printed propaganda textiles over more than two centuries, from the French Revolution to Brexit.Book tickets
Curated by design historian Amber Butchart, this exhibition explores printed propaganda textiles over more than two centuries. Discover how fabric designers and manufacturers have responded to political upheaval from the French Revolution through to Brexit.
The mechanisation of textile industries from the mid-18th century led to the development of print techniques that could create more detailed imagery on cloth, quicker than ever before. These increasingly affordable processes ‘democratised’ textile decoration, allowing governments, regimes, and corporations to harness the power of print to communicate, from wartime slogans to revolutionary ideals.
Propaganda is usually associated with public art and monumental sculpture. Through this exhibition, explore how fabrics have been used as a political medium both in the home and on the body, through furnishing and fashion. Find out how textiles were used as a tool of the state across the political spectrum, from communism to fascism. Discover how a fraternal crisis in the monarchy played out on cloth, and how democracies promote national identity through textile design.
On display will be textiles from countries including Britain, America, Italy, Germany and Austria, and ranging from French toile de Jouy to Japanese robes from the Asia-Pacific war, and Cultural Revolution-era Chinese fabrics which have rarely before been exhibited in the UK.
The Fashion and Textile Museum operates in line with all government guidance in relation to COVID-19. We regularly review our procedures and practices to ensure the safety and well-being of our visitors and staff. If you are displaying COVID-19 symptoms or have tested positive, please do not visit.
In place of a permanent display, the Fashion and Textile Museum hosts a diverse programme of temporary exhibitions, displaying a broad range of innovative fashion and textiles from designers and makers around the world.
On arrival: Please ensure you arrive within 20 minutes of your chosen entry time. Upon entry, please present your ticket(s) on your device or a note of your booking reference number.
Eating and drinking: No food or drink is permitted in the Museum, other than bottled water. The Fashion and Textile Museum is located in the heart of fashionable Bermondsey Street, surrounded by award-winning restaurants, cafes and pubs. So if you would like to enjoy a meal or a drink before or after your session, check out what’s on offer.
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We are working hard to resolve this issue and apologise for the inconvenience caused.
The museum will be closed while we refresh our galleries for the upcoming exhibition, Andy Warhol: The Textiles.
In the meantime, enjoy our online programmes, browse our online shop or buy tickets for our next exhibition. We look forward to welcoming you back on 31 March!