The Strand in London is currently hosting Louis Vuitton’s Series 3 exhibition in London; showcasing the creative mind and process behind Nicolas Ghesquière’s newest Autumn/Winter collection 2015.
Many have described the exhibition as a marketing tool and some are there to celebrate the magic, whilst venerating his meticulous craftsmanship and influences. Vuitton CEO Michael Burke insists that the exhibition is unlike anything else, asserting ‘This isn’t a Vuitton lesson. I just want them to be able to feel it’. Much to my delight, this is exactly what the exhibition entailed.
The exhibition was far from simple; it was a journey through Ghesquière’s creative process, stream of consciousness, dreams and self-reflexive journeys. Intertwined with his vision for new shapes, patterns and technology he enabled the viewer to enter his mind. The exhibition was beautifully structured with a delicate artisanal touch, whilst paying tribute to the future of fashion. Each room you entered had a story of its own and it was not to celebrate the heritage of Louis Vuitton but about the relationship between the clients and the house. The exhibition itself was no longer than half an hour and no matter how little you knew about the brand, it was a breathtaking experience of modern couture.
The beginning of the exhibition was an extraordinary geodesic dome; a reference to the structure built for the fashion show at the Foundation Louis Vuitton in Paris. The next room was in tribute to the master-mind himself. The center of the room contained a Louis Vuitton trunk which had Ghesquière’s creative process and inspiration. It has been 100 years since Louis Vuitton was established and to this day it contains some of the brand’s most treasured secrets and guards many of Ghesquière’s newest ones.
The next room was entitled ‘artist’s hands’ and each craftsman’s movement is that of an artist. There were two women at separate stations bringing to life some of Louis Vuitton’s well-loved icons. When asked how long it takes to create one piece, the lady replies ‘it takes 7 people 30 hours to complete one bag’. It was an incredible experience to follow them in real-time creating La Petite Malle and the Dora; two of Louis Vuitton’s new classics.
With fashion week been and gone, the next room entitled ‘infinite show’ allowed the viewer to relive the excitement of a fashion catwalk. At Paris Fashion Week, Louis Vuitton showcased its latest collection at Foundation. It encompassed 48 looks, backstage: 30 make-up artists, 25 hairdressers, 45 model dressers and of course Nicolas Ghesquière. This room replicated the interior space of the catwalk where the show’s models are beamed life-size onto digital plinths all around the room. Some of the most famous pieces from the collection included a white sheepskin coat modelled by Freja Beha. She also carried an Echappée Belle trunk in silver Epi and walked in black leather ‘Masterpiece’ ankle boots.
Putting the catwalk into perspective was the accessories gallery. Nicolas Ghesquière had said ‘I’ve always loved designing accessories. For me, accessories never stand alone, there has to be a common thread between them. They’re an integral part of each outfit, either clashing or complimenting it.’ This room was luminescent white, featuring mannequins modelling some of the Autumn-Winter 2015/16 collection pieces. Enclosed in glass boxes were some fabulously vintage trunks and make-up cases dating back to the early 1920’s.
‘Wardrobe sensation’ was the last room of the exhibition and it sure lived up to expectations. Every woman desires a fabulous walk in wardrobe, where clothes are tucked away and come alive when worn. In this room, the garments speak to the woman who wishes to own it. The wardrobe is ‘a gateway to a thousand possibilities’. This room was truly breathtaking. Some of Ghesquière’s famous pieces from the collection were on show, allowing the viewer to feel, touch and immerse themselves into a world of designer couture.
The exhibition, though small contained a glamorous portrayal of Nicolas Ghesquière’s vision of Louis Vuitton to date. It brought to life his imaginative and artistic process of design, opening the eyes of the viewer to a progression of craftsmanship and inspiration.
The exhibition is running until 18th October, 10am-8pm, free admission. More information can be found here: