these days, men's fashion may not be as ornate or as subjected to trends as what women are wearing, but when looking back in time, a slightly different picture arises. currently on at the los angeles county museum of art [lacma] is an exhibition which sheds light on exactly that. entitled reigning men: fashion in menswear 1715–2015, it meticulously explores the history of men’s fashionable dress from the mid-18th century to the present day. interestingly, the showcase re-examines the frequent association of fashion with femininity, and is divided into five thematic sections – revolution/evolution, east/west, uniformity, body consciousness, and the splendid man – to indicate that early fashion trends were informed by what men were wearing, as much as they were by women’s dress.
mind you, many an 18th century male aristocrat would be wearing a three-piece suit, striking in both make and style, and equally lavish as the dress of his female counterpart. as said, this showcase is about how the male peacock has evolved over time, but also shines a light on the changing concept of masculinity. it does so, not only by making connections between history and high fashion, but also by tracing the many cultural influences. the presentation is an elaborate one, featuring no less than 200 looks drawn mostly from lacma’s renowned permanent collection of costume and textiles [on through aug 21]. location: lacma, 5905 wilshire boulevard [west hollywood].