New Exhibition Gallery at American Textile History Museum to Open November 1 With Princess Diana's Dresses

10 Aug, 1998, 01:00 ET from American Textile History Museum

    LOWELL, Mass., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Dresses for Humanity, an Exbibition
 of the Dresses of The Princess of Wales will kick-off the November 1, 1998
 grand opening of the new changing exhibition gallery at the American Textile
 History Museum in Lowell, Massachusetts.  The exhibition features 20 designer
 dresses worn by the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and is part of an
 international tour to raise funds for causes the Princess supported.  The
 Museum will be the only New England stop on the tour.
     From November 1, 1998 to January 17, 1999 visitors to the Museum will be
 able to see Princess Diana's dresses up close, alongside photos of her wearing
 them.  The exhibit originated its two-year international humanitarian tour in
 June at the Ronald Regan Center in Washington, D.C.
     "We're so pleased to have the American Textile History Museum host this
 exhibit," said Maureen Rorech, Founder and CEO of The People's Princess
 Charitable Foundation, the tour's organizer.  "And it's especially appropriate
 since the Museum's collection of outstanding textiles and clothing creates a
 visual journey through fashion history."
     "I have every hope that by displaying the collection worldwide we can
 raise $100 million for the causes to which Princess Diana was most devoted,"
 said Rorech.  "AIDS and cancer research and programs that benefit children
 were a priority for her, and will be the beneficiaries of this Foundation and
 the exhibition."
     "We are delighted the tour is coming to the American Textile History
 Museum," said Museum Director Paul E. Rivard.  It will make a spectacular
 inaugural exhibition for our new gallery, and greatly contribute to the
 Museum's mission to put a different spin on history by providing families with
 a unique way to experience the elegance and beauty of finished textiles.  This
 is a perfect place for showcasing the extraordinary fabrics and exquisite
 designs of Princess Diana's dresses while increasing awareness of the causes
 she supported."
     Lowell's Mayor Eileen Donoghue expressed her enthusiasm over the exhibit's
 visit to the City of Lowell, saying: "This is a tremendous opportunity for
 Lowellians as well as thousands of expected visitors to not only view the
 exhibit of Princess Diana's dresses, but at the same time help charitable
 organizations locally and worldwide."
     Commenting on the Museum's image and its contribution to the image of the
 City of Lowell, City Manager Brian J. Martin said: "It is a credit to both the
 Museum and our city that The People's Princess Charitable Foundation will
 share Princess Diana's dresses with the community at-large.  The exhibit will
 have our total support."
     Added James Cook, executive director of the Lowell Plan, a public-private
 collaboration fostering alliances between businesses and government agencies:
 "This is further proof that Lowell is becoming one of New England's premier
 tourist destinations.  It's great news."
     Most of the dresses in the exhibit were purchased at the June 1997 auction
 the Princess took part in at Christie's in New York.  Fourteen of them are
 owned by Rorech, a Tampa, Florida business executive who owns a women's
 fashion company; the remaining six are on loan from other benefactors to the
 exhibition.
     Rorech became an object of American media curiosity when she successfully
 and anonymously bid on the "Travolta dress" by phone.  The ink-blue silk dress
 is perhaps the most famous in the U.S. -- it was the dress the Princess wore
 when she danced with John Travolta at a White House dinner in 1985. The dress
 sold for $222,500 at the auction -- the highest price ever paid for a garment
 at Christie's.  Following the Princess's death in August of last year, Rorech
 felt the collection should be put to work to carry on Diana's wish that the
 dresses be used for charitable purposes.  Rorech established The People's
 Princess Foundation to oversee the exhibition.  "Interest in this exhibition
 is overwhelming," said Rorech.  "Diana touched a special chord in people and
 there's a desire to keep that feeling alive."
     Tickets to the exhibit, which include general admission to the Museum and
 free parking will be: $10 for adults; $8 for students, seniors and group
 tours; free for children under 12.  For extended hours during the exhibition
 and more information, please call 978-441-0400.
     The American Textile History Museum is the nation's first full-scale
 museum devoted to American textile machines, and is home to the world's
 largest collection of textiles, costumes and everyday clothing, coverlets,
 hand tools, machines, books, manuscripts, photographs, and other artifacts
 relating to American textile history.  Founded in 1960 by the Stevens family,
 the museum first opened in North Andover, Massachusetts, following a
 successful five-year $9.7 million fundraising campaign and building project,
 the Museum re-opened on April 27, 1997 in Lowell -- the city widely recognized
 as the birthplace of America's Industrial Revolution -- to better serve the
 public.  The Lowell facility features exhibition galleries, the Museum Store,
 Gazebo Cafe, Museum Collections, the Textile Conservation Center, the Osborne
 Library, and Webster Education Center.
     The Museum is located in Lowell at 491 Dutton Street adjacent to the
 Lowell National Historical Park, 35 miles northwest of Boston off Route 495,
 and is accessible by public transportation.  Regular Museum and restaurant
 hours are Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday
 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed Mondays (except for holidays), Thanksgiving,
 Christmas and New Year's.  The building is wheelchair accessible.
 
 

SOURCE American Textile History Museum
    LOWELL, Mass., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Dresses for Humanity, an Exbibition
 of the Dresses of The Princess of Wales will kick-off the November 1, 1998
 grand opening of the new changing exhibition gallery at the American Textile
 History Museum in Lowell, Massachusetts.  The exhibition features 20 designer
 dresses worn by the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and is part of an
 international tour to raise funds for causes the Princess supported.  The
 Museum will be the only New England stop on the tour.
     From November 1, 1998 to January 17, 1999 visitors to the Museum will be
 able to see Princess Diana's dresses up close, alongside photos of her wearing
 them.  The exhibit originated its two-year international humanitarian tour in
 June at the Ronald Regan Center in Washington, D.C.
     "We're so pleased to have the American Textile History Museum host this
 exhibit," said Maureen Rorech, Founder and CEO of The People's Princess
 Charitable Foundation, the tour's organizer.  "And it's especially appropriate
 since the Museum's collection of outstanding textiles and clothing creates a
 visual journey through fashion history."
     "I have every hope that by displaying the collection worldwide we can
 raise $100 million for the causes to which Princess Diana was most devoted,"
 said Rorech.  "AIDS and cancer research and programs that benefit children
 were a priority for her, and will be the beneficiaries of this Foundation and
 the exhibition."
     "We are delighted the tour is coming to the American Textile History
 Museum," said Museum Director Paul E. Rivard.  It will make a spectacular
 inaugural exhibition for our new gallery, and greatly contribute to the
 Museum's mission to put a different spin on history by providing families with
 a unique way to experience the elegance and beauty of finished textiles.  This
 is a perfect place for showcasing the extraordinary fabrics and exquisite
 designs of Princess Diana's dresses while increasing awareness of the causes
 she supported."
     Lowell's Mayor Eileen Donoghue expressed her enthusiasm over the exhibit's
 visit to the City of Lowell, saying: "This is a tremendous opportunity for
 Lowellians as well as thousands of expected visitors to not only view the
 exhibit of Princess Diana's dresses, but at the same time help charitable
 organizations locally and worldwide."
     Commenting on the Museum's image and its contribution to the image of the
 City of Lowell, City Manager Brian J. Martin said: "It is a credit to both the
 Museum and our city that The People's Princess Charitable Foundation will
 share Princess Diana's dresses with the community at-large.  The exhibit will
 have our total support."
     Added James Cook, executive director of the Lowell Plan, a public-private
 collaboration fostering alliances between businesses and government agencies:
 "This is further proof that Lowell is becoming one of New England's premier
 tourist destinations.  It's great news."
     Most of the dresses in the exhibit were purchased at the June 1997 auction
 the Princess took part in at Christie's in New York.  Fourteen of them are
 owned by Rorech, a Tampa, Florida business executive who owns a women's
 fashion company; the remaining six are on loan from other benefactors to the
 exhibition.
     Rorech became an object of American media curiosity when she successfully
 and anonymously bid on the "Travolta dress" by phone.  The ink-blue silk dress
 is perhaps the most famous in the U.S. -- it was the dress the Princess wore
 when she danced with John Travolta at a White House dinner in 1985. The dress
 sold for $222,500 at the auction -- the highest price ever paid for a garment
 at Christie's.  Following the Princess's death in August of last year, Rorech
 felt the collection should be put to work to carry on Diana's wish that the
 dresses be used for charitable purposes.  Rorech established The People's
 Princess Foundation to oversee the exhibition.  "Interest in this exhibition
 is overwhelming," said Rorech.  "Diana touched a special chord in people and
 there's a desire to keep that feeling alive."
     Tickets to the exhibit, which include general admission to the Museum and
 free parking will be: $10 for adults; $8 for students, seniors and group
 tours; free for children under 12.  For extended hours during the exhibition
 and more information, please call 978-441-0400.
     The American Textile History Museum is the nation's first full-scale
 museum devoted to American textile machines, and is home to the world's
 largest collection of textiles, costumes and everyday clothing, coverlets,
 hand tools, machines, books, manuscripts, photographs, and other artifacts
 relating to American textile history.  Founded in 1960 by the Stevens family,
 the museum first opened in North Andover, Massachusetts, following a
 successful five-year $9.7 million fundraising campaign and building project,
 the Museum re-opened on April 27, 1997 in Lowell -- the city widely recognized
 as the birthplace of America's Industrial Revolution -- to better serve the
 public.  The Lowell facility features exhibition galleries, the Museum Store,
 Gazebo Cafe, Museum Collections, the Textile Conservation Center, the Osborne
 Library, and Webster Education Center.
     The Museum is located in Lowell at 491 Dutton Street adjacent to the
 Lowell National Historical Park, 35 miles northwest of Boston off Route 495,
 and is accessible by public transportation.  Regular Museum and restaurant
 hours are Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday
 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; closed Mondays (except for holidays), Thanksgiving,
 Christmas and New Year's.  The building is wheelchair accessible.
 
 SOURCE  American Textile History Museum