Although the Sparklewren brand is still on indefinite hiatus, earlier this year designer Jenni Hampshire was inspired to…
The Underpinnings Museum presents Incendiary: A History of Red Lingerie, a digital exhibition curated by Summer Lee, examining the fashionability and societal perceptions of colour red in European and American women’s lingerie.
Red is a versatile colour, found in both flowers and fire and used to symbolize passion, love, power, danger, and death. When used to colour women’s intimate underclothes and nightwear, the colour’s poignant symbolism engages with societal perceptions of feminine sexuality and empowerment.
Incendiary tells this story through three time periods — the nineteenth century, mid-twentieth century, and contemporary lingerie — and features twenty-five objects from the Underpinnings Museum’s free and accessible digital collection. Highlights include a circa 1860s red midbust corset, a 1950s red padded quarter-cup bra by La Parisienne, a 1990s red-and-black corset from Agent Provocateur, and a risqué 2014 red “Java Dancer” set by La Perla Black Label.
The exhibition brings the story of red lingerie into the present day by concluding with a photo gallery of lingerie models, designers, and influencers who share their exclusive thoughts and associations with the fiery colour.