Fashion V Sport, which opens today, charts sport’s role in fabric innovation, displaying Comme des Garçons’ collaboration with Speedo on the LAZR swimsuit as a recent example. It also looks at sport as a uniform that allows the wearer to both blend in and stand out from a crowd and how sports paraphernalia often inspires obsessive collecting, displaying a clutch of rare Nike and Adidas sneakers in a glass case. Indeed, the show exhibits plenty of luxurious pieces alongside the practical, such as a blue sequined Chanel wet suit-style jacket from the house’s spring 1991 collection, a gleaming Paul Smith bicycle and a Chanel fishing rod displayed in its own quilted leather case. “It goes beyond what people want as a fishing rod, but it’s a fully functional piece, you can go fishing with it,” assured Ligaya Salazar, the exhibition’s curator. “We wanted to look at where fashion meets function, and some fashion designers have almost embraced sports design,” she added, pointing out a draped Yohji Yamamoto Y3 jersey dress as a sports piece that stands alone as a fashion item. “Looking at the folds and cuts, it’s something quite amazing.”
And to give visitors a complete sporting experience, artist Sissel Tolaas has — using chemicals — re-created the scent of human bodies, which is then piped through the exhibition space. The museum said it hopes the scent will “reinject the human body into the exhibition space.” The exhibition runs through Jan. 4.