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Theatre costume

Theatre costume

  • Date:

    ca.1975 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Hall, Malcolm (fashion designer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Painted satin and gold cord

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Jimmy Page

  • Museum number:

    S.79:1, 2-2008

  • Gallery location:

    Theatre & Performance, room 106, case 6, shelf B

  • Download image

This stage costume, worn by Jimmy Page, guitarist of Led Zeppelin, is known as the 'Egyptian' costume because of the symbols prominent on the back of the satin jacket. These symbols are more than just decoration, however, reflecting Page's interest in the occult, and particularly the teachings of early 20th Century British occultist and writer Aleister Crowley.

The Eye of Thoth, within the triangle, represents the ancient Egyptian God of writing, magick and learning; he is considered the patron of magicians and sages. The Egyptian woman is Nut (noot), Goddess of the sky; Aleister Crowley claimed that she revealed herself to him in 1904 as Nuit, the personification of infinite space. The winged disk emblem is found in many ancient cultures around the world; some believe the depiction of the winged disk is based on the appearance of the sun's corona during a solar eclipse.

As well as having meaning in the symbols, the ivory satin costume itself would have been highly eye-catching; Page's wild performance style was reflected in his stage outfits.

Physical description

[Theatre costume] Wide flared trousers in ivory satin
[Theatre costume] Short jacket of ivory satin with 'sailor' collar, the collar edges coming to points, and turned-back cuffs with points to each side. At lower edge a wide panel in the same satin, the upper edge of the panel with a point to front, both edges to points at back. The upper edge of the panel decorated with a band of machine-sewn stars in gold thread. The jacket painted with symbols. A gold star on each cuff, long-stemmed yellow lotus flowers on the lapels, on back of collar the 'All-Seeing Deity' symbol of an eye in a triangle in gold. On back of jacket an elongated Egyptian figure bent to form an arch over the winged solar disk symbol of Horus, the disk red, the wings yellow. At base at back a blue Hebrew letter 'he'. The jacket fronts with three large hook-and-eye fastenings of wire covered in gold thread, each fastening with coiled ends

Date

ca.1975 (made)

Artist/maker

Hall, Malcolm (fashion designer)

Materials and Techniques

Painted satin and gold cord

Marks and inscriptions

[Theatre costume] 'Malcolm Hall' '30'
[Theatre costume] 'J [pentangle symbol} N'
'YHVH'

Dimensions

Height: 150 cm, Width: 47 cm, Depth: 17 cm
[Theatre costume] Height: 74 cm

Descriptive line

'Egyptian' stage costume worn by Jimmy Page of the rock band, Led Zeppelin, ca. 1975

Exhibition History

Theatre and Performance (Victoria and Albert Museum, Galleries 103 -106 01/01/2009-31/12/2009)

Materials

Paint; Satin; Wire; Gold cord

Techniques

Painting; Sewing

Categories

Entertainment & Leisure; Stage costumes

Collection code

T&P

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Qr_O163738
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