The Cincinnati Art Museum’s upcoming exhibit, The Total Look, explores the work of Rudi Gernreich, one of America’s most visionary fashion designers, and his model Peggy Moffitt, both of whom helped challenge America’s cultural innocence with the goal of freeing women’s bodies.
Gernreich is most known for developing the provocative topless bathing suit, or monokini, in 1964. His work pairs powerful minimalism with psychedelic colors and geometric patterns to push the boundaries of traditional women’s clothing. Moffitt, with her complementary groundbreaking makeup and haircuts, played a crucial role in bringing Gernreich’s designs to life.
The exhibit features more than 60 mod ensembles (on loan from Moffit) as well as a collection of photographs by Moffitt’s late husband, William Claxton, and the first fashion video, from 1967.