Take a Sneak Peek at the Stunning New Hermès Exhibition at Saatchi Gallery in London
The theme of the show is “flânerie“, the act of aimless wandering and soaking up everyday life. “Flânerie, that wonderfully liberating art of urban wandering, is second nature to Hermès, one could even say our most profound nature,” says Pierre-Alexis Dumas, artistic director and the family-run company’s sixth generation member.
Set designer Hubert le Gall turns 11 exhibition spaces in Saatchi’s massive 7,000 square-foot gallery into fantastical rooms that pay tribute to the brand’s past and future, combining its old-world aesthetic with modern designs.
“The idea was to at the same time evoke nostalgia around the idea of what flânerie is, but to completely put it into a contemporary context.” Dumas told Style.com.
Visitors will encounter a room with a hanging disco ball surrounded by projectors playing an image of a Parisian street through which a man wanders. Another room highlights the walking cane, an item often associated with the flaneur (a man of leisure) and features video works by artist Romain Laurent. And a well-curated room of special-edition handbags—including the brand’s most sought after product, the Birkin Bag—will surely be a highlight.
The flaneur‘s journey includes a typical Parisian cafe setting, shopfronts done up in wistful French style, and even a peek into Emile Hermès’s personal 30,000 item collection of curios. Dumas said the first object Hermès bought was an umbrella when he was just 12. The family still has it.
After the exhibition opens in London it will travel to Paris in September, Milan in December, and China next year.
“Wanderland” is on view at the Saatchi Gallery in London from April 9 through May 2, 2015.
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