The Musée Galliera Unveils Model Exhibition

“Mannequin — le corps de la mode” opens on Feb. 1, 2013 at Les Docks, a new design and cultural center on the eastern fringes of the city.

Photo by Guy Bourdin from 1978.

MODEL MOMENT: The Musée Galliera in Paris, currently under renovation, continues its string of off-site exhibitions with a show exploring the role of models over time. “Mannequin — le corps de la mode” (“Model — the body of fashion” in English) opens Feb. 1 at Les Docks, a new design and cultural center on the eastern fringes of Paris.

In the 19th century, mannequins were meant simply to be artificial, inanimate objects of beauty used to sell clothes. With the advent of haute couture, society ladies and actresses became fashion icons. Afterward, professional models — recognized by photographers or designers — became muses and stars.

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The show will present close to 120 images of fashion models from videos and magazines, combined with actual mannequins. It includes the work of photographers Horst P. Horst, Erwin Blumenfeld, Henry Clarke, Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin, Nick Knight, Corinne Day and Juergen Teller.

Originally created for the Rencontres d’Arles 2012 summer photography festival, “Mannequin — le corps de la mode” will run through May 19. Les Docks recently staged exhibitions on Balenciaga and Rei Kawakubo’s “White Drama” collection for Comme des Garçons.

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