Fashion takes its cues from some odd places – Harems, apparently; gladiator arenas, and in Gaga’s case, abattoirs. However, biology is something often overlooked in the sartorial stakes.
Today, The Wellcome Collection looks to overcome this, unveiling the White Lung Dress. The piece is the latest addition to The Primitive Streak fashion collection, which details the story of human embryonic development. There’s a neural induction dress, heart tube hat and even a sperm coat.
The display is part of The Wellcome Trust’s 75th Anniversary celebrations, and will be on show accompanied by the first public showing of Breathe, a short film by Adam Mufti commissioned by Primitive Streak collection.
Primitive Streak is the brainchild of fashion designer Helen Storey and her scientist sister, who first collaborated on the project in 1997. Their latest collection explores the science behind the development and function of the lungs.
The White Lung Dress, which will be on display in the Forum in the Wellcome Collection, is made of soft, shiny sponge material, reflecting the texture of the human lung.
Adding to the Trust’s Anniversary celebrations, the show runs alongside a talk entitled Because You’re Worth It, exploring the connections between science and the arts. Sir John Tusa will chair a panel including sociologist and author Richard Sennett, space scientist Monica Grady and choreographer Siobhan Davies.
The discussion will examine the progress we have made a society in overcoming the traditional supposed gulf between science and the arts. In the light of recent funding cuts, their discussion of different ideas of value, how this can be measured, and whose role it should be to nurture and support science and is particularly pertinent.
Primitive Streak runs from 26 – 31 July at The Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road, NW1.
Because We’re Worth It is taking place at The Wellcome Collection on 28 July from 7.00pm – 8.30pm. Tickets are free but must be applied for via wellc.me/75debate