MoMu houses the largest collection of contemporary Belgian fashion in the world and stands out with its immersive fashion exhibitions.
In 2002 MoMu presented its first exhibition in the historical ModeNatie building on the Nationalestraat. Since then, MoMu has presented two temporary exhibitions every year. Smaller exhibitions and installations are presented in the gallery on the ground floor.
MoMu exhibitions are characterized by their immersive scenography. As a visitor, you not only see the exhibits, you also are immersed in the world of the designer or the theme. The exhibition space is completely transformed for every exhibition, making each visit a unique experience.
As of 2021, roughly 800m² of additional public exhibition space will be created, including a large, multi-purpose space and a permanent exhibition hall for the permanent collection. These will ensure that visitors can also visit MoMu while thematic exhibitions are being changed, and that during peak times we can simultaneously display three different fashion stories in the 2,000 m². MoMu also features an auditorium with a retractable stage enabling us to put on more readings, conferences and Q&A sessions.
Mission & Vision
Cultivating curiosity about fashion, making it more accessible to all.
Fashion is more than clothing, and more than “fashion”. It’s a prism to look at the world from different angles. One of the roles of a contemporary fashion museum is to push the meaning of the term “fashion” and move beyond the canonized narratives of fashion history. People need a place where fashion is subject to reflection and criticism. A haven to calmly observe the philosophy and dynamics behind fashion, its history and its future. A place to explore what fashion is, and what it does to us.
The collection consists of clothing, accessories, and textiles, as well as more unexpected pieces such as tools, machines for textile production, patterns, and fashion show invitations.
MoMu's collection policy focuses on the work of Belgian designers and alumni of the Fashion Department of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Prominent names from the contemporary international fashion world are also represented in the collection.
The collection grows every year through acquisitions, loans, and numerous donations, and now consists of over 38,000 pieces. This makes the MoMu Collection the largest and most important collection of contemporary Belgian fashion in the world. The museum continually receives international loan requests for pieces from its designer collection.
MoMu's historical collection of Western European costume and textile is a continuation of the collection of the former Costume and Textile Museum Vrieselhof.
In 2011, the historical collection was enlarged with an important acquisition. Over 2,000 objects from the 18th, 19th, and first half of the 20th century were acquired from the private collection of Ms. Jacoba de Jonge, complementing the existing MoMu Collection.
In addition to the fashion and costume collection, the museum also houses a vast library collection. The MoMu Library is an academic library for historical and contemporary fashion, textiles, and ethnic costume. With over 15,000 books, an archive full of valuable reference works, hundreds of contemporary and historical magazines, and a fast-growing digital database of images, the MoMu Library is one of the top in its field worldwide.
In 2017, the study collection was added to the museum's collection. The study collection is a separate collection intended to teach visitors about fashion by allowing them to study objects up close. The study collection can be used for academic research, as teaching material, or for inspiration. It will be able for consultation from Autumn 2021.
The study collection comprises historical, contemporary and ethnic clothing, fragments and samples. This more accessible collection consists of a donation by Ms. Jacoba de Jonge, a long-term loan from the Department of Conservation-Restoration at the University of Antwerp and pieces from MoMu.
MoMu reopened during the weekend of 4 and 5 September 2021. Exciting times, not least for the team from B-architecten, the renowned Belgian architectural firm that was responsible for the renovation.
The architecture of the museum today dates back to early 2000s when famous Ghent architect, Marie-José Van Hee, gave the building a new dynamic, and also a new public area for the city, after a radical renovation.
Donate an object
Would you like to donate an object to the MoMu Collection? Send photos of the piece together with a description by email. An employee will contact you shortly.