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Martin Margiela at the Palais Galliera

Categories : Exhibitions and Museums, published on : 3/5/18

The Palais Galliera (Paris Fashion Museum) is hosting an exhibition dedicated to Belgian fashion designer Martin Margiela until July 15th, 2018. This exceptional event is highly recommended by the Chess Hotel Paris team.



But who is Martin Margiela?

According to the specialists, he is one of the most influential designers in contemporary fashion. However, you're unlikely to have seen his face nor heard his voice. You may not even have read words attributed to him. All you have is the hairy profile that illustrates the catalogue for the exhibition. Margiela is notoriously private; he rarely allows pictures or interviews. The designer doesn't even put his name on the labels for his clothing. Instead, a simple white label stitched at its four corners acts as his signature.


What we know

We know that he was born in Leuven (Belgium) in 1957 and that he graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. He was the assistant of the famous designer Jean-Paul Gaultier and the stylist for eight seasons with Hermès. We also know that his own brand, the house of Martin Margiela, was founded in Paris in 1988.

© Stéphane Piera / Galliera / Roger-Viollet


© Julien Vidal / Galliera / Roger-Viollet


What we see

The first thing one notices is the originality of his creations. Each piece combines an appreciation of the aesthetic with true technical prowess. The Palais Galliera exhibition highlights major moments in the iconic couturier's career, starting in the 1980s when he paraded models in Japanese "tabi" through vacant lots and disused car parks. They also wore eighteenth century jabots and clothes were defined by the narrow shoulders which would become one of the designer's signatures along with re-structured vintage clothing and recovered accessories which were "melted" into new creations. Discover the "doll dresses", "replica" and "oversize" years and see how items have been reused, deconstructed, restructured or reassembled to create innovative and fiercely personal pieces. Fans won’t want to miss this retrospective at the Palais Galliera. Complete your experience with a visit to the "Margiela the Hermes Years" exhibition at the Museum of Decorative Arts from March 22nd to September 2nd.


Main photo credit : © Françoise Cochennec / Galliera / Roger-Viollet