Schiaparelli's Story Tailoring Exhibition at Villa Noailles, Hyères

Schiaparelli at Villa Noailles

An embroidered Zodiac jacket embroidered by Atelier Lesage is one of the 30 Schiaparelli haute couture creations currently exhibited around the swimming pool of Villa Noailles, an early modernist house designed by architect Robert Mallet-Stevens for art patrons Charles and Marie-Laure de Noailles in the 1920s.

Marie-Laure Noailles  (right) by Man Ray;  Elsa Schiaparelli (left)   

Marie-Laure Noailles  (right) by Man Ray;  Elsa Schiaparelli (left)


The pieces selected for this exhibition highlight the recent developments at Schiaparelli and were created by Bertrand Guyon, who was appointed creative director in 2015, two years after the couture house was relaunched. (Read story here)

The starting point of the exhibition was a photograph of Marie-Laure de Noailles, shot by Man Ray, in which she wears an earlier Zodiac jacket designed by Elsa Schiaparelli, a recurring design in her collections.

Noailles was a French artist and well-known patron of the arts, in particular the Surrealism movement in the 1920s-30s. Amongst others, she and her husband financed Man Ray’s film Les Mystères du Château de Dé (1929), and L'Âge d'Or (1930) by Luis Buñuel and Salvador Dalí

Noailles and Schiaparelli had many friends in common — including Dali, Ray, Jean Cocteau — as the couture designer was also a strong supporter of the art movement and regularly worked with Dali. An exhibition celebrating Dali and Schiaparelli’s creative collaborations will open in October at the Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Man Ray and Dali shot scenes in the swimming pool of Villa Noailles, making it a fitting place to showcase the contemporary jackets that reference some of Schiaparelli’s emblematic designs such as the Zodiac and the Jean Cocteau-inspired face-to-face profiles.

The exhibition highlights the important of cut and innovative fabrics in the recent Schiaparelli’s creations, from the structure of the shoulders to the use of incandescent or ultra-matte Lesage embroideries.

Alongside the examples of tailoring, is a shocking pink silk chiffon dress, Schiaparelli’s or signature color, suspended from the ceiling gently floating over the swimming pool.

Story Tailoring is presented as part of the International Festival of Fashion and Photography, but continues until May 28