Exhibitions archive


No clothes without material! The exhibition is devoted to textile raw materials, their production and processing in the clothing industry. Costumes and fabrics from 1800 to the present day illustrate the variety and beauty of textile material, showing their influence on fashion through the ages.

7th European Quilt-Triennial

The European Quilt Triennial was held for the seventh time in 2018. From more than 160 submissions, the international jury selected 41 works that reveal a broad spectrum of techniques, concepts and motifs and reflect the artists’ engagement with questions of time, world history or their own biographies.

Circus Knie Fashion

This exhibition contains spectacular costumes from the beginning of the last century to today. Illustrating a hundred years of circus history, the Knie family’s magnificent garments are practical workwear at the same time as being highly fashionable.

Lace and status

The exhibition is devoted to historical lace from the period 1500 to 1800. These exquisite textiles, for many centuries reserved purely for the top classes of society such as the aristocracy and the clergy, originally came into the ownership of the Textilmuseum as models for the booming East Swiss textile industry. Today the museum can boast a lace collection of international standing.

Total home design harmony?

“Total home design harmony” was announced by an advertising slogan of the Swiss textile company MIRA-X, whose innovative textile design became an international talking point from 1970 to 1990 and which set new standards. The exhibition focuses on three designers and design teams, respectively, who designed extensive collections for the company: Verner Panton, Trix & Robert Haussmann, as well as Alfred Hablützel and Jean-Philippe Lenclos.

New Fabrics – New Stuff. Design with Technical Textiles

From 23 August onwards, everything in the St. Gallen Textile Museum will be about “new fabrics”. The exhibition will thus focus on an aspect of textile production that is relatively little known. It is beyond the world of fashion and interior decoration that the wide field of technical textiles and smart textiles unfolds in multi-faceted applications. The exhibition avoids the usual view of textiles, for even well-known textile techniques and materials appear in completely unaccustomed spheres of application and combinations. They are used in medicine and wellness, in the automotive industry, in architecture and in energy generation.

6. European Quilt Triennial

Over 160 entries, designed by textile artists from 18 countries, were submitted to the 6th European Quilt Triennial, where an international jury selected 45 objects for the exhibition. With this project, the Textile Museum and the Textilsammlung Max Berk/Kurpfälzisches Museum in Heidelberg continue their collaboration on a successful exhibition series that explores current developments in a traditional technique. 

Fast Fashion

The “Fast Fashion. The Dark Side of Fashion” exhibition illustrates the backgrounds of the globalised production of fashion. It deals with production mechanisms, with economic and social aspects, but also with environmental issues. The term “fast fashion” denotes a corporate strategy which aims to bring new fashion into the shops at ever shorter intervals. Classic fashion segments such as haute couture, ready-to-wear and medium-priced off-the-peg clothes limit themselves to two collections a year, whereas cheap labels launch up to twelve collections within the same period of time.

Furor floralis

Flower mania! Whether a flamboyant sea of flowers, a wild mass of tendrils or tenderly scattered blossoms; whether arranged as decorative posies or as stylised geometric ornaments: floral motifs have dominated textile designs from the Middle Ages to the present. With its garden of glorious flowerpatterned textiles, the “furor floralis” exhibition reveals the intriguing parallels between textile design and horticulture. The lavish arrangement from the museum’s own collection is complemented by selected costumes and textiles from a private collection as well as garden plans from the landscape architecture archives in Rapperswil.

T’is – t’is not

Embroidery production played a defining role in the life of St.Gallen from 1800 onwards, thus it is no surprise that embroidery is a significant part of the famous St.Gallen children’s festival. Since 1824, children and youths dressed in festive white clothing have paraded through the city in early summer. Today, the triennial parade may be more colourful, but the school children of St.Gallen still invest much time in the preparations.

Dream & Realisation

From “white gold” linen to the world-famous “St.Gallen lace” to the high-tech textiles of today: the exhibition “Dream & Realisation” covers half a millennium of Eastern Switzerland’s textile history. Magnificent textiles from the Middle Ages to the present day demonstrate the master craftsmanship and innovative strength of this traditional industry, whose turbulent history has been driven by periods of great economic prosperity and global crises alike. 

Cherry Blossom & Edelweiss

On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Switzerland, the Textile Museum St. Gallen presents the exhibition “Cherry Blossom & Edelweiss. The Import of the Exotic” which dedicates itself to the influence of Eastern Asia on Swiss textile design.