11 April 2015

Sofie in "Wanderland" with Hermès


If you go down to the Saatchi Gallery today, you're in for a wander-ful surprise. Hermès Paris is currently occupying the top floor of the gallery with an exhibition for the aspiring flâneur.


Whenever I take a trip to Sloane Square, the Saatchi Gallery is a must-see. Their exhibitions are always varied, interesting and a treat for the senses. However, I think they've outdone themselves on this occasion! The Hermès exhibition is fabulous, and takes the viewer on a Parisian journey. So without further ado, allons-y!


When you enter the first room, you're met with walking sticks of the kind which make the average stick seem like an unsophisticated twig. Hanging askew along the walls, they each have an accompanying film showing the stick in action (ooer). It's all very surreal, and the films have a French art-house vibe going on. Tres chic. 

You're then invited to walk through a wardrobe (but of course) into a room lit as if you're walking across windows. You can overhear snippets of conversations from passers-by, and even spot the odd one walking underneath your feet.

Next stop is the bedroom, choc-a-bloc FULL of Hermès finery to make yourself look presentable for your journey. There's classic bags a-plenty, a dandy blazer... along with some mini dinosaurs, a dog hidden in a drawer and a horse's head on the wall sticking its tongue out. Yup.


"Manners can be fun"

I took a fancy to this warning sign, and it made me wonder why these haven't been introduced around the capital's shopping havens... Take note, TfL!


It set the scene for the wonderful array of Hermès handbags that followed. First stop: shopping.  So far, so good was the life of a flâneur. The bags were secured behind a think layer of glass on a revolving column which made them even harder to steal. Ahem.

La main dans le sac - or "handbag", to us Brits

Along with the main feature of ALL THE HANDBAGS *swoon*, there are also little trinkets displayed within street lamps. Sounds weird, but it works, trust me.

And then it's time for a break. Phew! Maybe you've taken your bike for a ride and you want to rest up?


Oh, and don't forget to post those letters to Virginia Woolf and your main man, Marcel Proust! They'll be wondering how you've been.


Every self-respecting flâneur knows that coffee is the perfect pick-me-up, non? And maybe a croissant or two, to maintain your energy levels as you discuss the meaning of life with des amis.

"The cafe of forgotten objects"

Or if your chosen tipple is of the alcoholic variety, Hermès has you covered... A Hermès bar, can you imagine?!


Please don't forget to take your bag with you when you leave, if you're feeling a bit squiffy. Your bag which is hung with some handcuffs... Nope, I don't know why, either. The French are a kinky bunch.


Next, you're taken into a BRIGHT, colourful room, because no cultural wandering adventure is complete without a trip to an art gallery, darling. With a huge Lichtenstein-esque mural, it's definitely at odds with the former shadowy bar with discreet corners... 


The attention to detail within this exhibition is second to none, if you hadn't already noticed. Each room has a different mood, and this intricate arch acts as a gateway to a weird and wonderful shopping arcade, Hermès style.

 The symmetry makes me happy

 I have it on good authority that this is the most stylish way to dispense petrol.


I think the fur biker helmet is perhaps my favourite thing on display - so impractical, but so brilliant - closely followed by my friend Edwardo (NOT the official name) the elephant.

Just chillin', wbu?

It's safe to say that Hermès takes shopping to a whole new level, making me wonder exactly what the cafe and bar puts in their drinks...

Finally, you arrive home - although whether it's your home or someone else's is left to the imagination. It's no ordinary house, however; with rising tablecloths and over-active feather dusters (very Beauty & the Beast), all is not what it seems!


And then when the flâneur (you) tears themselves away from the spectacle, you're shown the final door, which is adorned with lights to make it look very fancy indeed. If you wish, you can sit down on a bench to take in the hypnotic display...


Then, when you've seen enough, you can walk through, out into the real world, and wonder if the journey was all just an elegant, eccentric dream. One thing's for certain: I could get used to the life of a flâneur if Hermès has anything to do with it!

Still in a bit of a daze (beautiful fabrics and design will do that to a girl), I ventured out into the sunny Duke of York Square once more, and decided to take a little wander myself... to Zara. Oops!


"Wanderland" is a free exhibition (seriously!), and will be on display in the Saatchi Gallery (nearest station: Sloane Square) until 2nd May 2015. Go and experience it for yourself! You won't be disappointed.
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2 comments

  1. Oh my god, all of these photos are so beautiful and what a unique exhibition. Can't quite believe it's free!

    XO Naomi in Wonderland

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  2. Sofie-Eliza Price13 April 2015 at 14:25

    Right?! Definitely go check it out, such an amazing exhibition.

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