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After four years of renovation works, the historic Palais Galliera reopens with a very special exhibition: Alaïa. The first Paris retrospective on the designer takes places in this renaissance-inspired palace, presented in the Palais's galleries and in the Matisse Room at the Musée d’Art Moderne.  From one room to another, the exhibition unveils a selection of iconic models retracing Alaïa’s creative career. The exhibition is open until January 26th.

“I make clothes, women make fashion”. Creator, designer, stylist... Azzedine Alaïa has been called many names, but the one that defines him the most is certainly 'couturier'. From drawing to production, Alaïa masters every step of the building of a garment. His style is celebrated for its skillful cut and characterized by a great vision of the  woman's body.  ‘He  cuts  leather like others  cut  silk’, noted Olivier Saillard, the director of the Palais Galliera. Materials which are ennobled by the imprints and accidents of time are also a striking feature of Alaïa's work. Often considered as an architect of cut, leathers are to Alaïa what wood is to a carpenter.

“The past is bright, the future is dim”. An air of eternity is flying over this exhibition. Alaïa's first retrospective was in 1998 at the Groninger Museum in Holland, where his models were displayed side by side with  works by Pablo Picasso, Jean-Michel Basquiat,  Anselm Kiefer, as well as Christophe von Weyhe. In 2000, his work was exhibited alongside paintings by Andy Warhol. Today, at the Musée d’Art Moderne, Alaïa's dresses are mixed with Matisse's murals. Just ike the most renowned artists, Alaïa has left an indelible imprint on its time.

WORDS
JUSTINE TRAN
PHOTOS
PIERRE ANTOINE

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