RI Artscape: RISD Museum's 'All Of Everything' Is All Oldham

Jun 30, 2016

A fashion superstar from the 1990's, Todd Oldham is the subject of a dazzling retrospective at the RISD Museum, All of Everything: Todd Oldham Fashion. Oldham drew inspiration from everywhere: from his native Texas to the streets of Tehran and New York, and even  The Three Stooges. RIPR's Chuck Hinman talked to RISD Museum Curator Kate Irvin and Assistant Professor Mary Anne Friel about Oldham's career and the show, which runs through September 11th.

"Old Master-New Mistress" (front left), a Todd Oldham ensemble.
Credit RISD Museum

Irvin on the Oldham ensemble "Old Master-New Mistress," which features an embroidered version of the Mona Lisa:

"It’s hard to believe it’s not painted. This is why we sometimes called embroidering painting with thread. But then I think she’s also just got this very weird quality to her, you know this other worldly quality."

The ensemble "Tropical Strolling" (front left) features vintage fabric with new embellishments.
Credit RISD Museum

Irvin on the ensemble "Tropical Strolling," another skirt and shirt combination featuring brightly colored sequins applied with a technique known as "vermicelli patterning:"

"But what is underneath is actually a piece of vintage fabric. It’s a piece of vintage fabric from the 1940’s that’s called bark cloth. It’s a cotton fabric that came into the market after WWII as an upholstery fabric. So it was really meant to be bright and cheerful and ready for out door living in the new America."