TISM Costume Added To The Australian Music Vault's 'Strength In Sound' Exhibition

4 July 2023 | 12:10 pm | Mary Varvaris

"Just how did members of TISM breathe inside those ‘sock’ costumes?”

Australian Music Vault

Australian Music Vault (Credit: Jacinta Keefe)


The iconic silver, shiny "sock" costume worn by an anonymous member of TISM has been added to the Australian Music Vault as part of the new Strength In Sound exhibition.

A GREG! The Stop Sign!! prop has been included in addition to the costume, both of which you can take a closer look at below.

The Australian Music Vault is an exhibit within Melbourne’s Arts Centre precinct open from 10 am to 5 pm daily, for free, with no bookings required. 

The new Strength In Sound display marks the successes of Victoria’s largest Indigenous music festival, Share The Spirit, the beloved Big Day Out, the TISM costume created by Melbourne-based designer Alexi Freeman, as well as the cassette tapes for The Killjoys (1990), The Sugargliders (1990), Frente! (1992) and Something For Kate (1995), and a trip down nostalgia lane flipping through Recovery or Form Guide.

“The Australian music landscape is made up of so many vibrant communities that connect artists and audiences and evoke positive messages of inclusion and belonging,” Australian Music Vault curator Bella Chwasta said in a press release.

Strength In Sound celebrates just some of these festivals, venues, labels, organisations and online communities, and the artists that bring them to life.

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“We hope that visitors will feel nostalgic, connect with familiar objects as well as discover new artists and places they can go right now to engage with in their local music community.”

Journalist, author and presenter Jane Gazzo, an Ambassador for the Australian Music Vault, added, “Pre-2000s, there were no camera phones or social media to capture those precious moments at gigs, in-stores or festivals. 

"Strength In Sound reminds us of those innocent days when music lovers immersed themselves into those times, when record stores were the hub of gossip, magazines and street press were our bibles, and radio made local heroes of our artists.

“Communities come in all shapes and sizes, but perhaps nostalgia and good humour are the winners here in this latest exhibition at the Australian Music Vault, which showcases so many facets of those care-free days. And begs the question: Just how did members of TISM breathe inside those ‘sock’ costumes?” That’s a good question.

TISM costume by Jacinta Keefe

GREG! The Stop Sign!! by Jacinta Keefe

Earlier this year, one of the communities Gazzo and Chwasta would be proud of, TISM Forever, unveiled its first-ever "unofficial fan edit" of a full TISM concert. The video follows TISM's appearance at Good Things Festival in Brisbane. You can check out that gig here.

Kill Your Stereo’s review of TISM’s set at Good Things concluded, “They bashed through the classics, Whatareya?, Thunderbirds Are Coming out, Everyone else has had more sex than me, Greg! The Stop Sign, Saturday Night Palsy, and (He’ll Never Be An) Old Man River, and these songs weren’t even close to being the highlight of the show.”