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Dare to Wear Love

Date Feb 8, 2012 - May 6, 2012

Exhibition Overview

Dare to Wear Love is the first exhibition devoted to the celebrated work of top Canadian fashion designers who have created original pieces to raise awareness and funds for grassroots organizations who are turning the tide of HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. Speaking to the potency and poignancy of artistic expression within a global context, this installation showcases designs created from African cloth by Canada’s top fashion designers including Brian Bailey, David Dixon, Fashion Crimes and Linda Lundström as part of Dare to Wear Love, an innovative creative platform initiated by Jim Searle and Chris Tyrell, founders of Hoax Couture.

Additional Information

Launched in 2009, Dare to Wear Love challenged 24 designers to create unique couture using 6 yards of African cloth, designs that were then showcased on the runways of Toronto Fashion Week. As a successful design showcase and celebrity fundraiser, the annual event has built awareness and resources for the Stephen Lewis Foundation and their support of community-level organizations that provide care and support to women, orphans, grandmothers and people living with HIV and AIDS.

Part of the TMC’s ongoing focus on interdisciplinarity and cross-cultural initiatives, the one-of-a-kind collection of original designs generated since 2009 will be on view in its entirety. Celebrating the powerful association of creativity and social responsibility, the exhibition not only speaks to the vibrancy of contemporary Canadian design, but to the long-standing connection between the fashion community and grass roots activism.

Presented by the Textile Museum of Canada in collaboration with Hoax Couture, the Stephen Lewis Foundation, and the Fashion Design Council of Canada, with the generous support of the Bank of Montreal and Seven Continents.

Ross Mayer modeled by Rose (Ford Models), Dare to Wear Love 2009. Photo: Brian Summers
Hoax Couture modeled by Traci Melchor, Dare to Wear Love 2009. Photo: Brian Summers
Adrian Wu modeled by Keshia Chante, Dare to Wear Love 2010. Photo: George Pimentel