Charting a course between absolute restraint and ostentatious display ManStyle explores the extremes of masculine style and some of the most influential ideas that have pervaded menswear over the past three centuries.

ManStyle presents a broad survey of menswear from around 1740 to the present using examples from the NGV collection. Beginning in the eighteenth century with exquisite brocade and embroidered silk coats, the exhibition explores the evolution of the modern suit via the elegantly honed lines of the nineteenth century dandy, examining the rise of tailoring with its focus on perfect cut and fit.

In contemporary menswear design, new and traditional modes of dressing are continually merging to create new definitions of masculinity. From tradition to transformation: changes in proportion, shape and detail as well as material, colour and pattern, including the more radical influence of sportswear, sub-cultural attire and street wear; all have affected men’s fashion.

A range of men discuss their own personal fashion and style. Their responses were often frank, considered, funny or surprising, as each reflected on what they wear and the influences, experiences and observations that have shaped their clothing choices.