Textiles St. Gallen: History, High-Tech, and Haute Couture

May 26July 1, 2005

For over a thousand years, exceptional quality fabrics have been manufactured in the St. Gallen region of Switzerland. This unique artisanal and cultural tradition is the subject of Textiles St. Gallen, a touring exhibition commissioned by the Canton of St. Gallen. The exhibition looks back to the earliest days of textile-related activity in the region as demonstrated by Neolithic discoveries and the precious documents belonging to the historic monastery of St. Gallen. It describes the growth of the city as a linen-producer and trading center in the Middle Ages, the transition to cotton processing, and the rapid rise in popularity of embroidery during the 19th century. The exhibition culminates with a wide range of contemporary fabrics produced in St. Gallen.

Textiles St. Gallen: History, High-Tech, and Haute Couture

Embroidery detail from Textiles St. Gallen: History, High-Tech, and Haute Couture.

Marimekko: Fabrics, Fashion, Architecture

September 9November 18, 2004

Comprising more than 150 examples of fabrics, fashion clothing, accessories, and architecture, this exhibition explores the creation and rise of the Marimekko brand and its unique philosophy. It also introduces the foremost Marimekko designers and considers the key role played by women in creating the company’s successful lifestyle concept.

Marimekko: Fabrics, Fashion, Architecture

Linjaviitta dress, 1967. Dress by Annika Rimala & textile by Vuokko Nurmesniemi. Unikko textile pattern, 1964–65. Designed by Maija Isola.

Quilts: California Bound, California Made 1840–1940

October 1December 16, 2002

This collection of 38 extraordinary quilts illustrates the diverse origins of California’s quilted legacy. Also on display will be selected early California clothing.

In conjunction with the exhibition, the FIDM Museum & Library is publishing a comprehensive book by the same name, authored by guest curator Sandi Fox. The richly diverse legacy of California’s quilts is chronicled in words and beautiful images in this collection, which spans a century of quilt making. The catalog uses contemporary letters, diaries, and historical records to provide accounts of the social, political, and cultural contexts in which the quilts were brought west to California.

Quilts: California Bound, California Made 1840--1940

“Stars and Swags” quilt, c. 1855. Loan courtesy of the California State Parks, Sutler’s Fort.

Northern Brights: Textile Reliefs by Riitta Nelimarkka

July 21September 7, 2001

The FIDM Museum is pleased to present the first United States exhibition of this acclaimed Finnish textile artist. Drawn from nature, her jubilant characters are executed in a vibrant series of wool relief textiles: “The Merry Sea—The Irresponsibles” and “Elise.”

Northern Brights: Textiles Reliefs by Riitta Nelimarkka

Detail of wool relief textile art by Riitta Nelimarkka.