The Museum at FIT Celebrates 50 Years of Hip-Hop Style

The Museum at FIT is paying tribute to hip-hop‘s influence in fashion in the past 50 years. The exhibit pays homage to the past half of the century with its Fresh, Fly and Fabulous: Fifty Years of Hip-Hop Style show, which is the museum’s first dedicated to one specific music genre.

Fashion Institute of Technology‘s own Elena Romero and Elizabeth Way, who is co-curating the show discussed in a joint interview earlier this week that the exhibit aims to expand the narrative of the genre. The exhibit marks the 50th anniversary of the creation of hip-hop, starting in 1973 thanks to the Black and brown youth in the Bronx. Since then, a whole genre of music, dance, and visual art was born, reflecting the cultural lifestyle that was not yet tapped at the time. Romero, who was a former contributing editor at DNR, first covered hip-hop fashion at the height of the era. She documented the experience in her book, Free Stylin’: How Hip-Hop Changed the Fashion Industry, which later led to her ideating the concept for the show in 2018. She has commented on the importance of fashion in hip-hop and vice versa stating, “Fashion is this unofficial sixth element of hip-hop. It is a form of expression and style that goes along with the music.”

Visitors of the exhibit will get a chance to understand how the dress code has been informed by hip-hop style and how different forms of media like television shows, films, and record companies were a vehicle in promoting hip-hop artists and ideas. The Museum at FIT aims to spotlight different parts of the culture in sections like The Designer Dreams, High Fashion Does Hip-Hop, Collaborations and Hip-Hop in High Fashion. The exhibit also dives deeper in the creative intent of custom designers like Dapper Dan and established brands like Louis Vuitton and Gucci. The show hopes to create conversations around those that have helped hip-hop fashion expand and explore how musicians like Diddy, JAY-Z and Damon Dash have transitioned to becoming moguls in the ’90s, driving interest in the culture.

Those looking to discover more about the global impact of hip-hop can check out the exhibit at the Museum at FIT starting on February 8, 2023, to April 23, 2023.

The Museum at FIT
227 W 27th St.
New York, NY