This exhibition comprises a survey of textiles from the majority of nations that make up the Commonwealth.
Consisting of key historical and contemporary works, the collection demonstrates how various traditional and visual languages have transformed over time. It also provides an opportunity for the differences and similarities between the constituent nations of the Commonwealth to be explored while examining a range of issues.
The exhibition will tell two grand stories common across these diverse cultures while celebrating the courses of human histories and experiences. Firstly, the ceremonially significant textiles in display of power - the Power Cloths - worn by key figures in the nations of the Commonwealth, ranging from a state gown belonging to Queen Victoria to the Melbourne Lord Mayor John So’s Aboriginal possum cloak.
The second story concerns garments and textiles used in the Rites of Passage - from birth, circumcision, marriage to death and all that comes in between. RMIT Storey Hall facade will be transformed by cloths woven from gold and silver thread.
The exhibition is part of Festival Melbourne 2006, the cultural festival of the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games.
Festival Melbourne 2006 celebrates the breadth of culture and art from across the nations of the Commonwealth. The Festival is proudly funded and supported by the Victorian and Australian Governments.
Storey Hall is located diagonally opposite Melbourne Central Railway Station and can be reached by trams traveling on Swanston and La Trobe Streets, including the City Circle Tram.
Limited street parking is available.