Courtesy of ArtInfo
2012 is shaping up to be an unforgettable year in the celebration of fashion. Definitive exhibitions
are popping up all over the globe honoring fashion greats both past and present. As we awe over the recently opened Schiaparelli and Prada
exhibit at The Metropolitan, our style savvy counterparts across the pond are lining up for an equally exciting view inside the heritage of Hermes. Leather Forever
examines the brand’s love affair with the luxury material as they showcase their unique design and craftsmanship that makes this year’s 175th
Unveiled May 8th, Hermes has “set up shop” at 6 Burlington Gardens in London, the free entry exhibit running through May 27th. Following similar presentations in Shanghai and Rome, the twelve room exhibition not only takes visitors on a journey through the luxury house’s evolution from saddle maker to purveyor of iconic leather accessories. It also highlights the journey of handbag creation as Parisian artisans handcraft goods in front of eager onlookers. In another room, Hermes’ “Leather Reserve” is replicated with a spectrum of leathers from sapphire blue lizard to emerald green crocodile.
Courtesy of Trendland
Collections of Hermes creations are on display from a variety of Birkin and Kelly bags, icons that skyrocketed to accessory fame; to vintage treasures like 1973 Constance and 1954 Arceau bags, true testaments to the flawless beauty leather preserves as it ages. An ode to other leather wares, including watches, wallets, and journals alongside dedications to travel and equestrian pieces round out the exhibit. And it wouldn’t be Hermes if there wasn’t some whimsy; pieces like “a winged saddle in red and orange calfskin and yellow lambskin created by Hermès in 2005, a Kelly bag fashioned into a rocking horse and a black calfskin wheelbarrow commissioned by the Duke of Windsor as a present for Wallis Simpson in 1949.” (WWD
Courtesy of Selectism
The house has also created one-of-a-kind souvenirs in honor of the show (the process of which you can view in the video below). Four one-off versions of the Passé-Guide handbag, each adorned with a tribute to represent England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales, are displayed in the exhibition and will be auctioned via Christie’s online from May 14th
. The proceeds will benefit London’s Royal Academy of Art.