Fashion revolutionary Mary Quant comes to Tāmaki Makaurau in a major exhibition this summer

An international exhibition exploring the work of legendary fashion designer Mary Quant is set to open at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki this summer.

Here from the V&A in London, Mary Quant takes a look at the fashion icon who harnessed the youthful spirit of the sixties and embraced new mass production techniques to create a new look for modern women.

Auckland Art Gallery Director Kirsten Lacy is excited to share the fashion revolutionary and youthquake of the 1960s with New Zealanders through an exhibition that cleverly explores Quant’s transformative effect on the fashion scene. ‘Mary Quant was all about revolution. She dressed the liberated woman with her fun, youthful and creative designs. Quant made designer fashion affordable for working women, overturning the dominance of luxury couture from Paris,’ says Lacy.

Famously modelled by Twiggy, Grace Coddington and more, Mary Quant’s clothes personified the energy and fun of swinging London and Quant became a powerful role model for the working woman. Challenging conventions, she is known as the face of the miniskirt and popularised colourful tights and tailored trousers – encouraging a new age of feminism. Inspiring young women to rebel against traditional dress worn by their mothers and grandmothers, Quant turned a tiny boutique on the King’s Road, London, into a wholesale brand available in department stores across the UK, US, Europe and Australia. Quant’s success soon hit New Zealand, where her designs made fashion less exclusive and more accessible to a new generation.

‘We’re delighted that the Mary Quant exhibition is opening at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. We hope that it will appeal to everyone, not just fashion fans. The Quant brand is about so much more than clothes, representing humour, self-empowerment, and redefining rules and conventions,’ says the V&A’s Jenny Lister and Stephanie Wood, Co-Curators of Mary Quant.

Exhibition details
Mary Quant
When: Friday 19 November 2021 to Sunday 13 March 2022
10am–5pm daily
10am–9pm Fridays
Where: Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Cnr Kitchener and Wellesley Streets, Auckland

Why watermelon holds the secret to great skin

At a time when dry, flakes can be prevalent and holding on to moisture in your skin is a battle, adding a rich moisturiser or one or two drops of face oil at the end of your skincare routine can be a useful move. 

Gaining popularity on its own and in new skincare formulations are oils sourced from the seeds of watermelon and its relative, the wild tsamma, or Kalahari Melon. Endemic to the desert of the same that spans part of Botswana, Namibia and South Africa the Kalahari Melon is thought to have been the originator of the common watermelon we eat today. 

Given its ability to survive and thrive full of moisture in the driest of climates, Kalahari Melon has traditionally been used as a moisturiser in parts of southern Africa. Now its nourishing abilities are now becoming more widespread in modern skincare releases including from the likes of Glow Recipe, Goldfaden MD, Mara, Emma Lewisham, Fenty Beauty and more. 

The seeds of both varieties are rich in essential fatty acids, such as linoleic, oleic and palmitic as well as vitamins and antioxidants that help balance and repair skin’s natural barrier and increase and maintain its hydration levels – the perfect addition in colder weather. 

Watermelon fruit extract, (Citrullus Lanatus) is also popular in skincare given its hydrating and antioxidant abilities.

Five of the best skincare products with watermelon extracts: Fenty Beauty Instant Reset Overnight Recovery Gel-Cream; Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream moisturiser; Lanolips 101 Ointment Multi-Balm Watermelon; Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask; Emma Lewisham Supernatural Collagen Boosting 72-Hour Hydration Crème RicheMara Algae + Moringa Universal Face Oil