An exciting new exhibition celebrating the Mexican man who clothed some of the most iconic music stars of all time – from The Beatles to Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan to Jack White and The Killers – is coming to Liverpool this autumn.
St George’s Hall, Saturday 10 September – Sunday 16 October 2016.
Musical Threads – From Mariachi to Mersey Beat and Back, brings together for the first time outside the US a stunning collection of works by multi-award winning, Mexican fashion designer, Manuel Cuevas. Renowned for his rhinestone-studded designs, Manuel’s artistry and flare for creating eye-catching fashion is unquestionable, and many of his outfits have become as legendary as the stars who wore them.
Presented as part of ¡VAMOS! Liverpool – a programme of events which launched in 2015 celebrating all things Mexican – Musical Threads has been created and produced by Monkey Mind Productions, with support from Arts Council England, and debuts at St George’s Hall Saturday 10 September – Sunday 16 October 2016.
A star-studded concert celebrating Manuel’s stamp on the international music scene and showcasing his creations in action will take place at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall the week before on September 3, with support from Visit Tennessee, while Manuel himself will travel to Liverpool for a special “audience with” evening on September 10, hosted by designer, Wayne Hemingway MBE (more details for both to be announced over the coming months).
Manuel Cuevas, who now resides in Nashville, Tennessee, said:
“I am very excited that an exhibition created in my name is coming to Liverpool this year. There is a mutual love of music, popular culture and fashion between my home city of Nashville and Liverpool. Music is ingrained within the fabric of these two great music cities.
“I last visited Liverpool in 2015 as part of the inaugural ¡VAMOS! Liverpool programme and was overwhelmed by the warmth of the people and the welcome I received. I even had time to hang out with Sir Peter Blake and Mike McCartney, which was amazing. I really can’t think of a more appropriate place to showcase my designs. See you all in September.”
Emma Foxall, director, Monkey Mind Productions, said:
“Manuel is a true visionary, and the list of the people he has dressed is mind-boggling – Elvis, The Beatles, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Dolly Parton, the list is endless. The man created the look of American glam rock ‘n’ roll. It’s real statement clothing, non-conformist and utterly memorable. Liverpool will love it.”
“Musical Threads will be a once in a lifetime historic celebration of Manuel’s work, and its place in music history. It will trace Manuel’s Mexican heritage and how that influenced his unique style.
“This exciting, vibrant exhibition will tell the fascinating story of a young Mexican boy who started out making prom dresses for local girls in Michoacán, to making the likes of Elvis, Bob Dylan and many other superstars look a million dollars, in some cases, quite literally!
“From pop culture vultures and music lovers, to fashionistas and textile enthusiasts, Musical Threads will have huge appeal to many, and is an exciting new addition to Liverpool’s annual event programme, as a UNESCO World Heritage city of music.”
Nikolas Barrera, director of ¡VAMOS!, said:
“¡VAMOS! are really excited to work with Monkey Mind Productions and the legendary designer Manuel Cuevas to present such a highlight for the Liverpool programme.”
Alison Clark, director, north and national director, combined arts, Arts Council England, said:
“’Arts Council England is delighted to support ¡VAMOS! Liverpool through our exceptional awards programme. This unique cross-artform international collaboration that launched during the year of the 2015 UK Mexico celebrations will bring extraordinary creative experiences to the city of Liverpool and contribute to the reputation of the city as a place where great things happen.”
Along with pieces from his long list of iconic clients, and from The Country Music Hall of Fame, the exhibition with showcase a selection of jackets Manuel was commissioned to make for each US state, which Nashville’s Frist Center for the Visual Arts exhibited in 2005.
Details on how to get tickets for the Musical Threads – From Mariachi to Mersey Beat and Back exhibition, will be announced in the coming months.
Tickets for the concert at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall are now on general sale. Call the Box Office 0151 709 3789.
Visit http://monkeymindproductions.net/musical-threads for more details.
More about Manuel Cuevas
The man is not only a fashion designer; he is a costumer and an artist. His original designs have become the trademark of true American style. One name says it all; he is Manuel.
He was responsible for making Johnny Cash the man in black. He crafted Elvis’ signature gold lamé suit while working for Nudie Cohn. He fashioned the garments Bob Dylan wore when performing for the Pope. He has dressed all four generations of Hank Williams’. And if this is not enough to bring him a legendary status in music history, you can thank him for both The Rolling Stones and The Grateful Dead’s notorious insignias. But it doesn’t stop here – presidents, athletes, dancers, artists and movie stars have also donned his glittering couture, and he has designed costume for over 90 movies and 13 television shows.
Often referred to as the “Rhinestone Rembrandt,” Manuel hails from Coalcomán, Mexico, a small town in the central western state of Michoacán. Manuel’s fascination with his craft began at the age of seven, when his older brother, Adolfo, taught him how to sew. With a natural flair for colour and cloth, Manuel moved to Los Angeles and worked for several tailors, including Hollywood’s Sy Devore—making suits for clients such as the Rat Pack. But he soon became bored with everyday clothing. He then moved on to the world of costumes at Nudie’s famed western store, designing for the likes of Roy Rogers and the Lone Ranger. After 14 years in western wear, Manuel branched out and opened his own shop in North Hollywood, eventually relocating to Nashville in 1989 to continue his association with the music industry.
“Record companies call me to help fabricate personalities for their artists,” he declares. “I do for artists what they need—not what they think they need.”
Manuel has also been recognised many times for his marvelous contribution to pop culture. He was given the Hispanic Designers MODA award in 1992 and the “Intercoiffure” American Design award in 1996. Manuel proudly received special recognition from the Country Music Association in 2006 and several awards from Cody High Style. In 2012, Manuel was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the President of Mexico.
After a lifetime of achievements and countless ventures, Manuel chose to give back to the country that brought his dream to a reality. A 10-year-long project, he designed 50 jackets, full of embroidery and rhinestones – one for each of the United States. These red, white and blue sparkling representations of our history were showcased in a breathtaking exhibit that debuted in December of 2005 in Nashville’s Frist Centre for the Visual Arts.
Manuel currently lives right outside of Nashville and still happily works in his studio every day.
• April 2016: Nashville Fashion Forward Fund – “Legacy” Award – Nashville Fashion Week
• April 2016 in Morelia, Michoacán, Mexico – Named an artisan called the “Casa de las Artesanias” of the capital of Michoacán
• November 2011 – Star on the Music City Walk of Fame, Nashville, TN
• May 5, 2011 declared “Manuel Day” – city of Franklin, TN
• June 12, 2011 declared “Manuel Day” – city of Nashville, TN