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99/6/74 Textile length, 'Kee Collage', silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980. Click to enlarge.

Textile length, ‘Kee Collage’, silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980

Made by Rainbow Fabrics in Italy, Europe, 1980.
Jenny Kee collection of clothing, textiles, artwork and archive, Australia/England/Japan/Africa/USA 1967-1995

Jenny Kee (born Sydney 1947) is one of Australia's most important designers, best known for designing and retailing a unique range of colourful clothing and knitwear. One major theme links all aspects of this collection, Jenny Kee's love of Australia's unique natural environment. Her garments are a canvas for her artwork featuring images of native flora and fauna, the opal gem stone and urban icons like the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Opera House.

The Jenny Kee collection and archive was acquired by the museum in 1998 and 1999. They document the evolution of her clothing and textile designs, the creative process behind her designs, the development and management of her retail outlets Flamingo Park and Jenny Kee, the significant role she played in environmental activism in Australia and her public profile as a celebrity artist with-in the advertising industry.

The collection and archive document her life and work over twenty years and includes clothing and textiles by Jenny Kee as well as Kee's business partner Linda Jackson (b. 1950), original artwork for many of Kee's designs, business records, newspaper and magazine clippings, videos of parades, parade invitations, props and programmes, shop mannequins, shop signs, scrapbooks and posters.

The collection and archive not only records Jenny Kee's life and work, but also can be read as a document that charts important cultural changes in Australia. Kee was born in Bondi, to a Cantonese businessman father and Italian/British mother. An early newspaper clipping shows her modelling as the face of Canadian Airlines. In the 1960s, she, like many other young Australians, spent several years enjoying the creative atmosphere of 'Swinging London'. She returned to Australia in the early 1970s and attracted by the encouraging cultural climate of the new Whitlam led Labor government, decided to stay. Kee then opened her Flamingo Park' 'frock salon' in the Strand Arcade in Sydney selling her own designs as well as the work of other innovative designers like Linda Jackson, Peter Tully (1947-1992) and David McDiarmid (1952-1995). Many of the pieces sold through the shop are included in the collection as well as signage, programmes and videos of the lively parades she and Linda Jackson produced.

The collection preserves a unique record of this important designer's personal and professional career from the 1960s through to 1995.

Summary

Object No.

99/6/74

Object Statement

Textile length, 'Kee Collage', silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980

Physical Description

Textile length, 'Kee Collage', silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980.

Textile length featuring multicoloured print on a black silk ground. Print features a collage of 6 small paintings including Barrier Reef, Flowers, Rosellas, Art. Images include koalas, waratahs and wattle.

Dimensions

Width

910 mm

Production

Notes

Jenny Kee in Australia.

The paintings featured in this print were done from 1976 to 1978 and then collaged together into this print. Each separate painting also appeared on jumpers.

Images were taken from photos of models in the Flamingo Park fashion parades and abstracted and collaged together. The design process went from creating the knits, seeing them in parades and taking photographs, doing drawings from the photographs and then collaging them into this textile design.

The Art Print shows figures wearing Jenny's Mondrian and Leger knits.

This textile was printed by Rainbow Fabrics, Italy.

This textile was made in 1980.

Source

Credit Line

Purchased 1999

Acquisition Date

3 February 1999

Cite this Object

Harvard

Textile length, 'Kee Collage', silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980 2018, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 28 May 2020, <https://ma.as/167688>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/167688 |title=Textile length, 'Kee Collage', silk, Jenny Kee/ Rainbow Fabrics, Australia / Italy, 1980 |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=28 May 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

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