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V&A Balenciaga exhibition to open May 2017

Wednesday 12 October 2016
Words Spindle

The V&A are set to open Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion in May 2017, 100 years after Balenciaga’s first fashion house was opened in San Sebastian. The exhibition will celebrate founder Cristóbal Balenciaga, his work and legacy. On display will be pieces from the museum’s permanent collection, some of which have never been shown, and will feature 100 clothes and 20 hats. Also showcased will be photographs, fabric samples, and Balenciaga’s sketches, to explore his work process and skill as a designer.

The Spanish designer created the silhouette that became popular in the late 1950s: a boxy shape with broad shoulders, just one example of the designer’s massively influential contribution to fashion. The fashion house was also known for their bubble skirts, tunic dresses, balloon jackets and Empire line dresses. Balenciaga was innovative in their use of heavier fabrics to create the fashion house’s bold silhouettes. Today, the fashion house has gained a new creative director, Demna Gvasalia – also the head designer at Vetements – who is injecting his twist into the brand classic codes, as seen at their show at Paris Fashion Week.

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Balenciaga SS17 at Paris Fashion Week

Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion will be at the V&A, London from May 27th 2017–February 18th 2018.

Feature image: Swan Gallet/WWD/Rex