Biba and Beyond: Barbara Hulanicki
22 September 2012 Ė 14 April 2013
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
With its cutting edge yet affordable fashion, Barbara Hulanickiís iconic Biba store and label transformed the High Street shopping experience in the 1960s and 70s. Young working women shopped alongside models and celebrities, including Sonny and Cher, Yoko Ono, Mick Jagger, Princess Anne, Mia Farrow, Twiggy and Brigitte Bardot. Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Victoriana and Hollywood glamour were all combined to create striking, romantic and sensual designs.
Following an early success with her fashion designs for mail order, Barbara Hulanicki and her husband Fitz created and established the Biba brand. From Bibaís Postal Boutique to the shops on Abingdon Road, Church Street and, Kensington High Street, to the final, glamorous, six storey Big Biba in the former Derry & Toms Art Deco department store, Bibaís phenomenal success changed the face of UK fashion. What linked all the Biba stores was Hulanickiís skill in creating environments that complemented the appeal of her clothing. The atmosphere was unique, with loud music, stylish staff, dimly lit period interiors and chaotic changing rooms.
This major exhibition at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery celebrates the Biba lifestyle and also looks beyond Biba at Barbara Hulanickiís other successful careers in fashion illustration and design, interior design, architecture and fashion which are flourishing under her creative genius today.
The story of Barbara Hulanicki and Biba forms two thirds of the exhibition.
The final third focuses on her career from the late 1970s to the present day.