Underwear through the ages exposed

SNEAK PEAK: A preview of the exhibition posted on the gallery's Facebook page.

SNEAK PEAK: A preview of the exhibition posted on the gallery's Facebook page.

STAFF at the Bendigo Art Gallery have been busy unpacking a variety of undergarments from the Victoria and Albert Museum in preparation for Undressed - 350 years of underwear in fashion.

The exhibition opens on July 19 and features underwear that dates from 1750 to the present day.

The exhibition charts the history of private and intimate clothing – from corsets to court mantuas and boudoir wear to bustles - exploring underwear’s function in decorating and manipulating the body.

The Bendigo Art Gallery will host a special event on July 19 from 7pm to 10pm to coincide with the international premiere of the exhibition.

The event will feature performances by Lola Ramone and Midnite Velvet along with canapes and cocktails.

"The last time I heard about numbers there was was something like 250 people coming," art gallery director Karen Quinlan said.

"So it's a big night for us and it should be quite a fun night."

The Bendigo Art Gallery is also busy preparing for The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece which opens on August 2.

Selected from the British Museum’s world-famous Greek and Roman collection, the major international touring exhibition will give audiences the rare opportunity to see over 100 historical works including the impressive Discobolus. 

"I'm anticipating both shows will do well, especially as they'll be running side by side," Ms Quinlan said. "They're significantly different in terms of scale, in terms of size. I think the point is if people are not interested in underwear that's fine, they may be interested in antiquity and that's what we're trying to do, just offer a diverse exhibition program."

For more information about the Undressed special event on July 19 phone the Bendigo Art Gallery on 5434 6088. For more information about Undressed - 350 years of underwear in fashion and The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece visit www.bendigoartgallery.com.au

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