A LA MODE: Fashion — or rather the creative process — is going to take pride of place at La Samaritaine’s latest storewide exhibition, which is rolling out in-store and online for 12 weeks starting Thursday.
Under the theme “Atelier Mode,” the Right Bank department store will start by taking its customers for a quick cinematic spin through four vignettes, starting in the sketch-strewn office of a fictional designer, the pouty and snappily dressed Mr. de Luca; to the runway, where one horrified wave of a fan from de Luca rewinds — literally — the offending look back.
Taking cues from La Samaritaine’s tongue-in-cheek advertisements from the 1960s, the fashion film’s retro ambience sees Guillaume Henry’s designs at Patou get a cameo appearance.
Taking pride of place in the store’s central stage until May 12 is the “La Mode Est Un Jeu” exhibition, dedicated to fashion photographer Erwin Blumenfeld. It will explore his radical approach to composition, optical illusions and depth of field using techniques as varied as translucent screens or putting negatives in the refrigerator, through a selection of studio works curated by his granddaughter Nadia Blumenfeld Charbit.
For those who want to dive further into what it’s like to be a designer, Henry and Patou have been tasked with telling it all through the “Table du Créateur” (or designer’s table) experience, which will offer a glance at his office as well as an exhibition of some 100 drawings done by ESMOD students.
La Samaritaine will also offer more hands-on opportunities, from do-it-yourself kits in the “Boutique de Loulou” selection to workshops, including live sketching sessions on weekends; designing a look either virtually through a sketching app or IRL, with a selection of fabrics from deadstock platform Nona Source, or learning how to do makeup like a runway pro in the beauty department.
Brands will also get in step with the 12-week program, with the likes of Dior, Destree, Benjamin Benmoyal and By Far being given free rein for a week to showcase their creative universes through in-store events.
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