23 March – 22 September 2024

With the great exhibition “Walter Albini. The talent, the designer” curated by Daniela Degl’Innocenti and Enrica Morini, from 23 March to 22 September 2024 the Museo del Tessuto di Prato Foundation pays tribute to the genius of the designer and absolute pioneer of Made in Italy, Walter Albini (1941-1983), just over 40 years from his untimely death

“Walter Albini. The talent, the designer” seeks to offer a reinterpretation of the entire professional career of a protagonist of Italian fashion between the late 1960s and early 1980s, created through extensive research carried out by the curators to outline a portrait of the designer who for many is almost unknown.

For the first time, the exhibition combines graphic materials – drawings, sketches, designs, photographs, fashion magazines and archival documents – with many clothes, accessories and fabrics often never seen before and never exhibited, thus allowing to reconstruct Albini’s entire creative history, from his first experiences as an illustrator and fashion designer to the last collections of the 1980s.

The project’s starting point was the Walter Albini Collection of Museo del Tessuto, acquired thanks to a large donation by Albini’s collaborator Paolo Rinaldi received between 2014 and 2016: a heritage that includes over 1,700 objects including jewellery, sketches, drawings, photographs, documents, books, clothes and fabrics belonging to the designer, which document his interests, creativity and great design ability.

The exhibition also includes important loans from public institutions such as the Centro Studi e Archivio della Comunicazione (CSAC) of the University of Parma and Palazzo Morando | Costume Moda Immagine

di Milano, and from private lenders: A.N.G.E.L.O. Archive, Benedetta Canu Archive, Carla Sozzani Collection – Sozzani Foundation, Doris Beretta Collection, Enrico Quinto and Paolo Tinarelli Collection, Francesco Campidori Collection, Ilaria De Santis Collection, Massimo Cantini Parrini Collection, Simona Morini Collection, TizianaVintageafropicks Collection, Vito De Serio Collection, Madame Pauline Vintage Archive.

The famous photographers who have allowed us to access their archives for the exhibition and catalogue include Maria Vittoria Backhaus, Alfa Castaldi Archive, Ballo&Ballo Archive, Fiorenzo Niccoli, Franco Bottino – Archivio Storico Fondazione Fiera Milano, Gian Paolo Barbieri Foundation and Aldo Liverani.

The collaboration with the Historical Archive of the National Chamber of Italian Fashion kept at Bocconi University of Milan was fundamental in the research, as well as the important documentary heritage on Walter Albini kept at the CSAC in Parma.

Buy your ticket online. With this ticket you can visit all the permanent and temporary exhibitions.

The exhibition

A great exhibition which through more than 300 objects, many of them never seen before, including drawings, photographs, jewellery, fabrics and clothes, tells the story of over 20 years of work of an absolute pioneer of Made in Italy, designer, noble father of ready-to-wear and the total look.

The exhibition is spread out over the museum’s spaces, covering an area of over 1,000 square metres. In parallel with his career as a designer, it also explores other aspects of Albini’s creative flair, such as his passion for theatre, cinema and interior design.

The historical collections room on the ground floor retraces the years of his training, from his beginnings as a designer for sector magazines up to uniform collections, touching on collaborations with Baldini, Krizia, Billy Ballo, Cadette, Paola Signorini, Princess Luciana, Glans, Annaspina, Cole of California, Ideacomo, Montedoro, Diamant’s, Misterfox, Sportfox, Basile, Callaghan, Escargot (from 1959 to 1972).

The WA brand creations presented in London, Venice and Rome between 1973 and 1974, and garments from the second Misterfox line, are presented on the upper floor.

The last exhibition hall on the first floor presents the years 1975 to 1983 with Alta Moda, the collections created in collaboration with Trell, Mario Ferrari, Lanerossi and Lane Grawitz.


Walter Albini has been the subject of detailed research and an interdisciplinary study that have benefited from never-before-seen archival documents, useful for connecting him back into the culture of his time,’ underlines Daniela Degl’Innocenti, co-curator of the exhibition. ‘Albini’s training as a young man, combined with his exceptional natural talent, see him as the protagonist of that project which, in parallel with industry specialisation, allowed him to map out the guidelines of Italian ready-to-wear and to build, with experience, the image of the designer. Beyond any legend, his professional path follows the times of his personal research.

‘Studying Walter Albini again after 40 years was an extraordinary opportunity, for which I am grateful to Museo del Tessuto,’ says Enrica Morini, co-curator of the exhibition. ‘It was an opportunity to understand the complexities of an authentic fashion creator who experienced the enthusiasm, fragility and contradictions of a system that would become Made in Italy, but which at the time was being born and seeking out its own identity. The answers came from in-depth (and long) research work involving scholars from different specialisations, who I thank for their commitment, but above all for the passion with which they approached the great designer’s work.


Walter Albini. The talent, the designer, whose importance is attested by the patronage of the National Chamber of Italian Fashion, is completed by a rich catalogue published by Skira, edited by Daniela Degl’Innocenti and Enrica Morini and accompanied by contributions that reconstruct all of Albini’s many facets. Alongside the essays by curators Daniela Degl’Innocenti, fabric historian, curator of Museo del Tessuto and Enrica Morini, fashion historian, lecturer at the IULM University of Milan, the volume includes texts by Paolo Volontè, sociologist, associate professor at the Polytechnic Institute of Milan; Antonio Mancinelli, professional journalist and university lecturer; Margherita Rosina, fabric historian and curator; Bianca Cappello, jewellery historian, lecturer and exhibition curator; Samuele Magri, fashion historian and university lecturer; Lucia Miodini, Media and Fashion Section Manager, CSAC, University of Parma; Alberto Zanoletti, fashion and design journalist, Styling professor at the Naba New Fine Arts Academy in Milan and Rome; Elena Gipponi, researcher in Cinema, Photography and Television at the IULM University of Milan; Valentina Garavaglia, theatre and entertainment historian, professor at the IULM University of Milan.

The volume ends with a documentary appendix on the companies that have been affected by the designer’s professional career, edited by Michela Taloni, a fashion history scholar.

The exhibition inaugurates the Foundation’s cultural programme for the year 2024 and once again confirms the important role of Museo del Tessuto in Prato in enhancing Italian textile and fashion heritage.

Founded in 1975, today Museo del Tessuto is the largest cultural centre in Italy dedicated to the enhancement of ancient and contemporary art and textile production, carrying on the memory of a tradition that has been inherent in the city of Prato since the Middle Ages.



Temporary exhibition 23 March – 22 September 2024

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