Thea Porter, Mode Avant Garde, September 1978. Photograph by Jacques d’Alva
Thea Porter – 70s Bohemian Chic at FTM
The first-ever exhibition on the fashion and interior design of Thea Porter (1927–2000) who pioneered bohemian chic in the 1960s and 1970s. Her shop in Greek street, Soho opened in 1966 and instantly drew a rock and film star crowd of clients from the Beatles and Pink Floyd to Elizabeth Taylor, Faye Dunaway and Barbara Streisand.
Pink Floyd dressed in Thea Porter, promoting their album Pipers, 1967. Photograph by Vic Singh
The retrospective covers Porter’s life and career from her early years in Jerusalem and Damascus, Beirut in the 1950s, Soho in the 1960s, and New York, Los Angeles and Paris in the 1970s. Featuring outfits worn by some of the world’s best-dressed women, the exhibition explores the influence of Middle Eastern and North African textiles and culture on 20th century fashion and interior design.
Thea Porter, Gold lamé kaftan, December 1972. Photograph by Norman Parkinson, for British Vogue
Highlights include Porter’s seven signature looks: the Abaya & Kaftan; the Gipsy dress; the Faye dress; the Brocade-panel dress; the Wrap-over dress; the Chazara jacket; and the Sirwal skirt, as well as important fashion photography from the pages of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and Women’s Wear Daily.