New York Fashion Week (February 6-13, 2014) may get all the buzz with the season’s latest trends, but these shows focus on more lasting impacts of fashion in New York. From a multimedia retrospective on Jean Paul Gaultier to fashion photographer Mario Testino’s treatment of traditional Peruvian dress from Cusco, fashion exhibitions and talks in February and beyond span time and place.

The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is busy nipping and tucking as it completes a major two-year renovation in May to present  Charles James: Beyond Fashion. An American designer working tradition of the Haute Couture, James (1906 – 1978) used sculptural, scientific, and mathematical approaches to construct revolutionary ball gowns and innovative tailoring that influence designers to this day.

Scroll down for current fashion-forward events and more exhibitions coming up this spring.