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Clothing the Pandemic (ICOM Solidarity Project)

Connecting international museums and curators documenting and contextualising the use of facemasks during the coronavirus pandemic of 2020–21.

Te Papa Researchers: Stephanie Gibson, Claire Regnault, Isaac Te Awa, Rachel Yates

Partners: ICOM Costume and Royal Museum of Ontario

Initiated by ICOM Costume, this research and digital exhibition project aims to document and contextualize the use of facemasks during the coronavirus pandemic of 2020–21. Facemasks have become the iconic object and symbol of the pandemic representing humanity’s resilience, community and unity during this global tragedy. The project will connects international museums and curators working on this topic, and their collections virtually to a global public.

Primary outputs: A collaborative virtual exhibition of Covid-19 facemasks, online conference and publication, collection development

A brown face mask woven with flax on a white background


Raranga Face Mask, harakeke, cotton fabric, muka, by Ms Purewa Macgregor, 14 May 2020, Hastings. Te Papa (ME024616)