Hippie Chic at the MFA

Woman's caftan Thea Porter, 1969 Frederick Brown Fund Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Woman’s caftan, Thea Porter, 1969
Frederick Brown Fund, Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

A new exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts celebrates hippie fashion, in all its paisley, velvet, fringe, and tie-dye glory. Just as the hippie movement rebelled against the political status quo, it also rejected the designs of the haute couture designers of the time. Rather than fashion trends trickling down to the masses from the most exclusive design houses, during this period, youth street fashion influenced the runways. Made more visible by rockstars and celebrities, hippie fashion borrowed from other cultures, and was inspired by Pop art, vintage nostalgia, and historical fantasy. The result was colorful and eclectic. Says Malcom Rogers, Director of the MFA, “clothing became a canvas for personal expression.” Take a groovy walk into history with this exhibition, on view until November 11. In the meantime, the MFA has created this Spotify playlist to get you in the mood for time travel!

Dress Thea Porter, about 1970 Gift of Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Dress, Thea Porter, about 1970
Gift of Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf, Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Patrick Litchfield, Wearing Mr. Fish, 1971 Copyright © 1971 Rex USA. No use without permission. Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Patrick Litchfield, Wearing Mr. Fish, 1971
Copyright © 1971 Rex USA. No use without permission. Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Hippie Chic, on view until November 11.MFA, Avenue of the Arts at 465 Huntington Avenue. Open Saturday-Tuesday, 10am – 4:45pm; Wednesday- Friday, 10am – 9:45pm. Admission (includes repeat visit within 10 days) is $25 for adults, $23 for seniors and students, and free for 17 and younger weekdays after 3pm and weekends (otherwise $10). Wednesday nights after 4pm admission is by contribution. For more information, visit the MFA website.

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