Blue Jeans


photo: Justin Smith

An iconic street symbol that can be found in almost every wardrobe: the blue jeans. Worn for more than 150 years, the garment holds an even more longstanding tradition. Still it has repeatedly proven to be modern and innovative. The Centraal Museum presents the first large-scale exhibition in the Netherlands on this unique material. Across various themes, the exhibition shows new work by renowned artists, combined with national and international loan pieces - showcasing both craftsmanship and innovative technology.
The exhibition includes the traditional 19th century Levi’s for miners, Jurgen Bey’s window installation commissioned by Levi’s RED and Dutch design label Droog, as well as designs by  Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier, Maison Martin Margiela and Marithé + François Girbaud and Yves Saint Laurent.

As Yves Saint Laurent often repeated: “I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity – all I hope for in my clothes”.       


Master of the Blue Jeans, Woman begging with two children  – on loan from Galerie Canesso, Paris © Thomas Hennocque
Master of the Blue Jeans, Woman begging with two children – on loan from Galerie Canesso, Paris © Thomas Hennocque

Blue jeans, from 17th century to present day

The exhibition is divided into a number of themes showing the experimental and creative side of jeans: from their origin as work wear in the 17th century, to high fashion in the 20th century, to modern-day jeans - including internationally renowned Dutch labels such as G-Star. Special attention is reserved for national and international subcultures, in which the jean is a product for the masses that expresses uniformity, but at the same time a most personal garment that reflects individuality.
The exhibition also looks at the DNA of jeans: the materials, buttons, labels and their typical indigo blue colour. The highly polluting production process and current innovative sustainable alternatives, such as ‘zero water waste’ and ‘ozone’ treatments, are also part of the exhibition.

Fashion in Centraal Museum

Fashion design is one of the main spearheads of Centraal Museum. The museum aims to collect work by genuine designer talents at an early stage. National and international designers have therefore been asked to create a unique design to accompany this exhibition - with the emphasis on experimentation, innovation, craftsmanship and interdisciplinarity. 


This exhibition is subject to a surcharge of € 2. 

Gluejeans Revolution Jeans ©Bill Tanaka
Gluejeans Revolution Jeans ©Bill Tanaka


? Log out

Log in

My last viewed items