Hook and eye

Missoni dress with detail of hook and eye

The Missoni exhibition at the Estorick Collection. It’s always nice to see exhibitions in this venue. Nice small size so no museum fatigue. Nice café. Nice staff. Lovely Georgian building. And a good excuse to potter through Islington, people-watching and dodging the buggies.

If you work in museums you always need to take a mental step back when visiting exhibitions for pleasure. Otherwise you only see things you would change: objects that need dusting, typos on labels or – shudder at the thought – no labels at all.

That said, the Missoni exhibition had fewer clothes and textiles than I expected. I really wanted to see more archival pieces. But what was there was pretty amazing. Colours and shapes. Yarn, knits and weaves. Unlike anything else out there.

And the additional objects from the Missoni family private collections were great – a zinging citrus coloured Futurist suit and a beautiful 1950s painting by Tancredi.

Best of all, there was a really engrossing long film on show. It fully immersed you in family Missoni. Their love of colour and craft was palpable. And worth watching to see the grand dame of the label, Rosita Missoni, wearing the mad mixed patterns as they should be worn – all at once, one on top of the other.

All in all, I came out knowing more about the label and having a greater respect for the craft behind it. Can’t ask for much more than that. Except maybe a piece to own…

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