The Evergreen Classic – Transformation of the Qipao
23 June – 13 September 2010
Special Exhibition Gallery
Jointly presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department and the Institute of Textiles & Clothing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Organised by the Hong Kong Museum of History
In association with the Hong Kong Heritage Museum
Showcasing some 280 qipao, this exhibition illustrated the origins of the qipao and its transformation between the 1920s and 1960s, evolving along with the changing social and cultural societies. Despite retirement in the late 1960s from its role as daily garment for women, the qipao continued to exist in many different ways. This exhibition analysed how the qipao has constructed a cultural symbol from a piece of clothing, and how contemporary fashion designers have injected fashion and modern elements into it, making it transforming continuously. For this exhibition, we have invited teaching staff of the Institute of Textiles & Clothing at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University to design qipao to be showcased in this exhibition, to give new perspectives on how a contemporary training institute of fashion design interprets the qipao tradition. Besides featuring qipao from different times, this exhibition also included the qipao worn by the Beijing Olympics ceremony hostesses in 2008 as well as that worn by Mrs Gwen Kao, wife of Nobel Laureate Prof. Charles Kao, at the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony.