Fashion is not just about couture, ready-to-wear and big name designers. It’s also about putting a look together, about style, about making a point, about belonging.


For a museum, it’s difficult to capture this phenomenon because by it is nature it is fleeting; it is here today and gone tomorrow. But one way to capture this is through photography.


Not just photographs taken for glossy fashion magazines but images produced for all sorts of other purposes, to be published in the music press, for example, in skate magazines, and even family snapshots. 


So in the re-vamped Fashion Museum we have set aside an area to display fashion through images. 

'1977' is the first of these displays. 


Thirty years ago this year, punk and new wave bands played music and wore clothes that expressed their identity and demanded attention. 


The images in this exhibition were taken by young, talented photographers all making their names by capturing the energetic and edgy cultural explosion known as punk. 


Their photographs were printed in the music press of the day -  NME, Melody Maker and Sounds - and helped both to record what was happening musically and to disseminate new ideas about dressing and behaving.


The display features photographs of the following punk and new wave bands:
The Clash, Johnny Rotten, Ari Up, The Jam, Debbie Harry, Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers,
The Only Ones, Buzzcocks,
The Ramones, The Rezillos,
X-Ray Spex, Tom Robinson Band,
Ian Dury, Hugh Cornwell,
Elvis Costello, Gaye Advert,
Don Letts, Siouxie and the Banshees, Paul Weller.


The photographs are by:
Jorgen Angel 
Howard Barlow 
Caroline Coon
Kevin Cummins
Ian Dickson 
Erica Echenberg 
Jill Furmanovsky
Chris Gabrin
Doug McKenzie
Pennie Smith
Ray Stevenson
John Tygier

Image: black and white photograph of the singer Debbie Harry

Debbie Harry,  © Ian Dickson


Image: black and white photograph of musician Paul Weller holding a guitar

Paul Weller,  © Ian Dickson


Image: black and white photograph of Ari Up in performance

Ari Up,  © Ian Dickson