Running from Nov. 28 to March 8 at the Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas in Madrid, the retrospective celebrates the renowned shoemaker’s career, spanning 46 years, and his work as a form of art.
Hosted by Vogue Spain and cosponsored by Bulgari, the exhibition will debut an exclusive bejeweled pair of shoes alongside the wide range of over 200 historic styles and 80 sketches displayed at the show.
Blahnik and Bulgari’s jewelry creative director Lucia Silvestri designed the pair of lime green, silk satin pumps, embellished with contrasting pink and purple gems on the ankle straps. Inspired by Bulgari’s high jewelry “Festa” collection necklace, which was released earlier this year, the detailing lines up 11.41-carat diamonds, 48.61-carat rubellites and 38.19-carat amethysts cut in the shape of chili peppers.
Blahnik enthused about the embellishment, calling it “divine and perfectly complimented of the zesty green satin.”
“It has been an honor to work with such an iconic brand with a wonderful Italian heritage,” he continued, adding that both share “the same vision and creativity to produce beautiful things for beautiful women.”
First unveiled in Milan in January, “Manolo Blahnik: The Art of Shoes” is a traveling exhibition curated by Cristina Carrillo de Albornoz, who worked on the project for the past two years.
Organized in six areas according to Blahnik’s leitmotifs and inspirations, the show includes the “Gala” section, displaying the most imaginative styles, such as the ones created for Sofia Coppola’s movie “Marie Antoinette.”
Sections of the exhibit are dedicated to materials, art, architecture and the many geographical influences on Blahnik’s creative process.
Before hitting Madrid to honor Blahnik’s Spanish roots, the exhibit stopped in other relevant locations for the designer, including Palazzo Morando in Milan; the State Museum Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia, where he often looks for inspiration, and the Museum Kampa in Prague, Czech Republic, which is the paternal home of his family. As its final stop, the show will be held at the Bata shoe museum in Toronto in 2018.