A fur exhibit may not be the feel-good show of the year, but it will have you talking for days. The National Museum of Denmark has one of the largest fur collections in the world — over 2,000 historical fur garments. For the first time in history, the museum is displaying a selection of its private collection in a special exhibit that includes 60 garments from the regions of the Arctic Circle between 1850 and 1950. These creations will sit alongside modern fur designs from designers like Yves Saint Laurent, Sonia Rykiel, Oscar de la Renta and Jean Paul Gaultier.
The ethical dimensions of fur farming and modern hunting are central themes, sparking a platform for discussion for folks on both sides of the fence. This is most prevalent in the section labeled “Voices in the Debate,” where visitors have the opportunity to hear 50 supporters and opponents of the fur trade through statements and video; this hand-picked group includes politicians, designers, public figures and experts. If guests want to get in on the act, they can try on fake, real or “blood spattered” fur and take selfies or write text messages, which are also incorporated into the exhibit.
Fur — An Issue of Life and Death will run through February 22, 2015 in the Egmont Hall at the National Museum of Denmark.