Galerie Gmurzynska’s Homage to Zaha Hadid

Dame Zaha Hadid passed away in Miami on March 31, 2016 at the age of 65. On the 5th anniversary of her death, Galerie Gmurzynska presents an immersive homage to the visionary architect.

The Great Utopia, The Russian and Soviet Avant-Garde, 1915, 1932, 1992, © Galerie Gmurzynska

The shared interests between the gallery and Zaha Hadid for the Russian avant-garde fortuitously crossed paths in 1992 at the monumental exhibition «The Great Utopia,» at the Guggenheim Museum for which Zaha Hadid designed the rotunda – the first architect tasked with reimagining the Frank Lloyd Wright architectural icon. From early in her career, her peerless aesthetic was deeply inspired by Kazimir Malevich and the Suprematists, on whom she prepared her graduation thesis in 1976.

Zaha Hadid and Suprematism installation at Galerie Gmurzynska in 2010 (click here for a previous post).

The gallery’s active collaboration with Zaha Hadid from 2010 until her death began with the idea to again combine her knowledge of the Russian avant-garde with her architectural practice, which had advanced deeper since the Guggenheim exhibition. Thus, in 2010, the exhibition «Zaha Hadid and Suprematism» was held at Galerie Gmurzynska’s headquarters on Paradeplatz in Zurich. The exhibition and book, published together with Hatje Cantz, became a global event. This first collaboration with Zaha was followed by many other exhibition projects, including at Art Basel.

With Zaha Hadid in 2012 during a dinner at Art Basel when she signed the book for me (for the post click here). 

On the occasion of the important Malevich retrospective held in 2014 at Tate London the star architect was asked to take part in a long documentary about Malevich with the BBC. Part of this documentary included an interview with Galerie Gmurzynska CEO Mathias Rastorfer and Zaha Hadid about Malevich and the nature of architecture and art.

The final project completely planned by Zaha Hadid was again to show the dramatic development of her architecture in the context of another foundational modern master: Kurt Schwitters. The exhibition architecture was planned entirely by Hadid, and the selection of works by Schwitters was as well rigorously curated by her. Hadid unfortunately died before the opening of the show and left behind an architectural monument remaining unchanged in the Galerie Gmurzynska on Paradeplatz, open to the public.

The latest exhibition at Galerie Gmurzynska titled «Abstracting The Landscape» was conceived and created with the same team with whom the gallery planned and executed all Zaha Hadid exhibitions since 2010. It has been a fruitful and euphoric collaboration for all involved, for which Galerie Gmurzynska expresses its heartfelt gratitude to the entire Zaha Hadid design and archive team. In this spirit of long-term collaboration and the highest respect for her perpetual vision, historical projects with models and drawings, as well as sculptural objects realized since her passing have been individually selected to be integrated into a custom floor design displaying Hadid’s best traits. The exhibition also features site-specific objects, as well as never-before exhibited designs. It will be open until July 31, 2021.

I was able to shoot different looks inside the exhibition which presented me with an amazing backdrop. Stay tuned for all the posts coming up soon…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of Galerie Gmurzynska, © David Biedert Photography

La Prairie x Niki de Saint Phalle

On the occasion of the International Women’s Day, La Prairie announces lead patronage of Niki de Saint Phalle‘s most substantial U.S. retrospective at MoMA PS1 in New York.

On view from March 11 to September 6, 2021, Niki de Saint Phalle: Structures for Life will feature over 200 works created from the mid-1960s until the artis’s death, highlighting Saint Phalle’s interdisciplinary approach and engagement.

Niki de Saint Phalle. Californian Diary (Order and Chaos). 1994

La Prairie honours Niki de Saint Phalle’s audacious and visionary feminist spirit – her defiance of social norms and her willingness to break the codes both in her personal life and work. The work of Niki de Saint Phalle has a particular resonance for La Prairie as it was her striking use of cobalt blue that was the inspiration behind La Prairie’s iconic Skin Caviar Collection colour.

Niki de Saint Phalle. Flaçon de parfum. 1982

In 1982, Niki was developing her eponymous fragrance from her atelier in a shared design studio in
New York where La Prairie’s team would often engage in creative exchanges. When La Prairie
encountered Niki de Saint Phalle’s cobalt blue – her favourite colour that she describes «as the colour
of joy and luck» – the link became clear: only cobalt blue would do. A fortunate encounter that would
spark a bond with the House of La Prairie and seal it forever.

La Prairie Skin Caviar Collection

Just as Niki de Saint Phalle raised awareness on modernist, progressive views, La Prairie’s founder paved the way to pioneering discoveries. Dr. Paul Niehans was a dreamer, a seeker of beauty. Art was central to his science, central to his dream to hold time in his hand, central to his pioneering spirit. A spirit mirrored in Niki de Saint Phalle’s inner flame of audacity. She expressed a new femininity, one which stood in opposition to the conventional influences and values of society.

Niki de Saint Phalle working on the set for The Travelling Companion at her studio near Milly-la-Forêt. 1977.

Through her lifetime, Niki de Saint Phalle used her platform as an artist to bring attention to various issues advocating for women’s equality to provoke and trigger conversations – a legacy that today continues to inspire new generations of artists and women beyond. Niki de Saint Phalle also shaped art movements such as Nouveau Réalisme. As the only woman in the 1960s-founded group, she offered a unique perspective and proved her art was as innovative as her male counterparts.

Niki de Saint Phalle. La femme et L’oiseau fontaine. 1967–88

«Niki de Saint Phalle created artwork that explicitly rejected patriarchal values and artistic convention. Her Nanas confront Western standards of femininity and decorum: they are brash, ecstatic, and embrace sexuality. She created her Nanas at such a large scale specifically so that they could dominate – literally tower over – men. Saint Phalle was also an iconoclast in her personal style and way of life,» according to Ruba Katrib, Curator of the exhibition.

Last Night I had a dream, 1968-1988

This collaboration with the upcoming exhibition at MoMA PS1 in New York is an opportunity for the Swiss luxury house to enable the world to experience Saint Phalle’s revolutionary work. It is also an expansion of La Prairie’s support of art and culture by creating new connections with the world of art and its various representatives, whether emerging or established artists or cultural institutions. A commitment that continues to flourish and to build on the House’s existing partnerships with art fairs Art Basel and West Bund Art & Design and the iconic Fondation Beyeler in Switzerland.

More information at moma.org/ps1. I would love to see this exhibition and truly hope that we will be able to travel to the U.S. soon again.

LoL, Sandra

Niki de Saint Phalle with La Fontaine Stravinsky

Photos: Courtesy of La Prairie, © 2021 Niki Charitable Art Foundation
© Michiko Matsumoto, © Leonardo Bezzola Estate

My Look: Mirage Gstaad

One thing you should not have missed when visiting Gstaad, is the outdoor sculpture MIRAGE GSTAAD. Until this month, the mirror house designed by Los Angeles-based artist Doug Aitken stands on the hiking trail between Schönried and Gstaad and can only be reached on foot.

With every available surface clad in mirror, it both absorbs and reflects the landscape around in such ways that the exterior will seemingly disappear just as the interior draws the viewer into a never-ending kaleidoscope of light and reflection. With the help of my tripod, I shot this outfit post by myself – a comfortable look that is perfect for hiking around Gstaad.

My look: Lawrence space-dyed cashmere sweatericon, and Lauren fringed space-dyed cashmere wrapicon, both by Gabriela Hearst, skinny jeans «Kate» by Dolce & Gabbana, Biker II leather bootsicon by Jimmy Choo, Loulou heart-shaped acetate sunglasses by Saint Laurent, Clash de Cartier ring in 18K rose gold with amazonite by Cartierand waist belt by CHANEL.

LoL, Sandra

 Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht
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Masterpiece London x Net-à-Porter

First of all, congrats to Net-à-Portericon, my favorite shopping destination turns 20 this month and it never stops to amaze me. Last Thursday, I had the privilege too attend a very exclusive zoom meeting hosted by Net-à-Porter for their top clients to explore Masterpiece London, the world’s leading cross-collecting fair, before the official launch date today.

With Alison Loehnis to the right and Charlotte Olympia in the middle at another amazing Net-à-Porter event in London.

Our lovely host, Alison Loehnis, president of Net-à-Porter, was joined by experts from the art world for a virtual discussion on «Voyages of Discovery: journey, legacy and connection in art & design.»

Philip Hewat-Jaboor gave us some great insight into Masterpiece London.

Philip Hewat-Jaboor, chairman of Masterpiece and a distinguished collector himself of exceptional pieces from every category imaginable, including 18th-century and early-19th-century ceramics, marbles, furniture and antiquities, gave us a great introduction. What sets Masterpiece London apart from other art fairs is the juxtaposition of art and design from all periods and origins. It is the unmissable art fair at which visitors can view and buy the finest works of art, design, furniture and jewellery – from antiquity to the present day.

Emma Ward during the meeting in front of a Picasso painting.

«Art is incredibly subjective.» – Emma Ward

With almost 400 years of collective art world experience, Dickinson specialises in privately and discreetly handling rare Old Masters through to Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary masterpieces. Emma Ward, Managing Director, who runs the company, explained us how to navigate through today’s complex and fast-moving art world.

Stunning necklace by Fabio Salini

«I couldn’t find the perfect color combination. Therefore I divided the gems in two rows, into warm and cold colors.» – Fabio Salini

Gemologist and jewelry designer Fabio Salini worked for Bvlgari and Cartier before launching his own brand, creates original jewelry and events around the world. In 2004 he opened his Atelier in Rome, an elegant shop and design studio that has become the focal point of his work, representing the quintessence of his style. His keen interest in contemporary art as a form of expression and a source of inspiration has led to brilliant collaborations, like that with Fernando and Humberto Campana, rooted in a tantalizing mélange of jewelry, design and art. He sees himself as a contemporary artist, very much related to his emotions. He is a pisces, very moody, feelings change every single day.

Image of Rockefeller’s salon designed by Jean-Michel Frank in 1939, showing the Léger mural and Giacometti andirons.

«I believe that a less severe principle can be found—the mixing of styles. The noble frames that came to us from the past can receive today’s creations. The house that we build now can welcome ancient things of beauty.» – Jean-Michel Frank

Such a source of inspiration: Helena Rubinstein’s apartment.

«Re-editions can be problematic.» – Daniel Malarkey

Daniel Malarkey, art advisor, specialized in contemporary art and important design for collectors. I loved his advice and speech. He spoke about provenance and the designer’s work; how proportion, materials and form inspire contemporary design today: how then one commissions site-specific design for interiors and mixing 20th century with contemporary.

Van Cleef and Arpels Œillet handbag mirror. Unique piece, High Jewelry Collection, 2019
Yellow gold, rose gold, white gold, pink sapphires, rubies, diamonds. £300.000

If this preview has whet your appetite, you can go even further with this online. Navigate on your own, you can do this from every corner of the globe. However, without the conversation with the exhibitors, you might be stuck. If you find something you like, make a telephone call, talk to the dealer, get engaged and learn more about the respective piece. Masterpiece’s exhibitors span all eras and disciplines and include many of the world’s most distinguished art dealerships.

Shopping art and design is actually similar to shopping at Net-à-Porter, do your homework. Understand the fabrics and materials, buy books and learn about iconic pieces. Buy the best you can afford, instead of buying 25 pieces, invest in THE one. You should feel comfortable in spending money so that you would like to do it again.

Chairs, ca. 1930, by Jean-Michel Frank (1895-1941), Galerie Marcilhac

If you commission a piece, find a gallery, an artist or designer. Talk about the feeling of the house, work on the discussion and have an eye on proportion.

Invest in something you like. It might become an iconic piece. I am a collector myself, my collection of high end fashion pieces is my biggest passion that I have followed since over 25 years now. I buy what I personally adore and this is in general the best advice! In the meantime, my collection includes many museum-quality objects.

Do you remember the auction sale of the art collection put together by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé that was held from February 21-25 2009? Yves Saint Laurent was a tastemaker of his own who also got inspired by art, as you can see perfectly in the creation of the famous «Mondrian dress». It was the first ever auction sale to be staged in the Nave of the Grand Palais. The event turned out to be memorable with even 34.000 visitors. Record-breaking items were: the Brancusi sculpture, Madame L.R. which fetched 28.1 million euros. The Matisse Cuckoos went for a spectacular 32 million, smashing the estimated figure of 12 to 18 million euros. Marcel Duchamp’s Belle haleine, eau de voilette fragrance bottle fetched 7.9 million euros.

Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé in their apartment with the famous dragon armchair.

Last but not least, a legendary item in the collection, Eileen Gray’s «dragon» armchair, defied all expectations, the sale price of 21.90 M€ being ten times the pre-sale estimate. This chair was absolutely different from her usual style, but you see how things can turn out surprisingly well.

Join Masterpiece Online (22 – 28 June 2020) for live panel discussions with leading cultural institutions, watch interviews and learn from experts, expert-led virtual tours or arrange a tailor-made private view for you and your friends.

Have a great start into the week.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht, Courtesy of Rockefeller Foundation, Net-à-Porter and Masterpiece

This Is the End of Baselworld!

In Wednesday’s post about the departure of Rolex, Tudor, Patek Philippe, Chanel and Chopard from Baselworld, I rose the question if this will be the end of the famous watch and jewelry show. Here is the answer and some more breaking news as the Swiss watch manufactures belonging to the LVMH Group, the world leader in luxury, have chosen to leave Baselworld in order to join the other flagship brands of the Swiss watch industry in Geneva from 2021 onwards. This includes all brands from the LVMH Watchmaking Division, TAG Heuer, Hublot and Zenith, as well as the House of Bvlgari.

Within this context of clearly weakened representation of the Swiss watch industry and hence inevitably lower participation, it appears clear to the brands composing the Division and to the House of Bvlgari that they must also withdraw in order to preserve their image and their relations with their clients as well with the media.They will therefore not be taking part in the 2021 edition of Baselworld.

The four Maisons are examining various potential event formats corresponding to the need to present their strategic directions and new products to their commercial partners – as well as to the international press – next year. The LVMH Watchmaking Division on the one hand, and Bvlgari on the other, will decide on their plans in the coming weeks, according to their respective objectives.

Stéphane Bianchi

Stéphane Bianchi, CEO Watchmaking Division LVMH, said: «We are sorry to have to leave this over 100-year-old Baselworld event to which our Maisons have been consistently loyal. It is nonetheless clear that we must respond quickly and make other arrangements. We are facing an opportunity to reinvent the format and content of one of the key moments of our watchmaking year, which represented both a major commercial challenge and a lever of influence for our brands. With this in mind, we will do our utmost to be present alongside the other prestigious Maisons that will gather in Geneva in April 2021, and thereby meet the requirements of our partners and clients while offering them an unrivalled experience.»

Jean-Christophe Babin, CEO Bvlgari Grou., stated: «Grouping the entire Swiss watch industry in a single location, Geneva – the historical capital of watchmaking – and around a single date, is a major opportunity to at last revive a sector that all too many divisions and divergent interests have weakened compared to the rest of the luxury sector in which Bvlgari is active and that is making much faster progress. We are looking forward to going to Geneva in April 2021, even though we still need to define the terms of our participation, which we will specify in the coming weeks. We are also delighted not to have to make up for the lack of institutional watch shows, which in 2020 forced us to take tactical initiatives that were necessary in the short term but undesirable in the medium term

So, dear ladies and gentlemen, this is the answer, this is the end of Baselworld…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands

Is This the End of Baselworld?

Yesterday I received the breaking news: Rolex, Patek Philippe, Chanel, Chopard and Tudor leave Baselworld to create a new watch trade show in Geneva with the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie (FHH). The show will be held early April 2021 at Palexpo, at the same time as Watches & Wonders (The FHH is the group that organizes what, until this year, has been known as Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH).) This departure follows a number of unilateral decisions made without consultation by Baselworld management, including the postponement of the watch show until January 2021, as well as its inability to meet the brands’ needs and expectations.

The announcement comes as no surprise – as open letters about the fair’s plans and its organizer’s handling of refunds, among other things, have been paramount this past week. Apparently, Baselworld management also opted to reschedule Baselworld 2020 for January 2021 without asking the exhibitors. The dates conflict with a host of other exhibitions around the world in jewelry and watches.

The new show, which will be linked to Watches & Wonders, organized by the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, is to take place at Palexpo. The aim is to offer partner brands the best possible professional platform, applying a shared vision to successfully meet future challenges in the watchmaking industry. It will also give crucial prominence to the sector’s expertise and innovations, both in Switzerland and internationally. Other brands may also be added, according to terms that have not yet been defined. This new event will be geared predominantly towards retailers, the press and VIP customers.

Jean-Frédéric Dufour

Jean-Frédéric Dufour, Chief Executive Officer, Rolex SA, and Board Member, Montres Tudor SA, said: «We have taken part in Baselworld since 1939. Unfortunately, given the way the event has evolved and the recent decisions made by MCH Group, and in spite of the great attachment we had to this watch show, we have decided to withdraw. Following discussions initiated by Rolex, it seemed only natural to create a new event with partners that share our vision and our endless, unwavering support for the Swiss watchmaking sector. This will allow us to present our new watches in line with our needs and expectations, to join forces and better defend the interests of the industry

Thierry Stern

Thierry Stern, President, Patek Philippe said: «The decision to leave Baselworld was not an easy one to take for me, being the fourth generation of the Stern family to participate to this traditional yearly event. But life evolves constantly, things change and people change as well, whether it is at the level of those responsible for the watch fair organization, the brands or the clients. We constantly have to adapt ourselves, question what we do, since what was right yesterday may not necessarily be valid today! Today Patek Philippe is not in line with Baselworld’s vision anymore, there have been too many discussions and unsolved problems, trust is no longer present. We need to answer the legitimate needs of our retailers, the clients and the press from around the world. They have to be able to discover the new models from Swiss watchmakers each year, at one time, in one place, and this in the most professional manner possible. That is why, following several discussions with Rolex and in agreement with other participating brands, we have decided to create, all together, a unique event in Geneva, representative of our savoir-faire.»

Frédéric Grangié

Frédéric Grangié, President of CHANEL Watches & Fine Jewellery said: «Like its partners, CHANEL shares the same independence and the same desire to protect and promote the values, know-how, utmost quality and precision of Swiss Watchmaking. This initiative marks a key milestone in the history of CHANEL Watchmaking and is part of a long-term strategy, which began with the launch of this activity in 1987. This exhibition will allow us to present all of our new creations in an environment that meets our high-quality standards.»

Karl-Friedrich Scheufele

Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, Co-President Chopard et Cie SA said: «Chopard first exhibited at the Basel fair in 1964 with a stand of some 25 square metres. After careful consideration, our family decided to support the Rolex initiative and retire from Baselworld – a painful decision. The creation of this new watch show in Geneva, in parallel to Watches & Wonders, will allow us to better serve our watchmaking partners and our customers. Through the alliance, these grandes maisons will also be able to collaborate in promoting the values and best interests of Swiss watchmaking.»

Jérôme Lambert

Jérôme Lambert, on behalf of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie Council said: «The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie is delighted to welcome a new salon which will strengthen the historical Watches & Wonders event in Geneva next year in early April.»

Further information will be published at a later date, in particular concerning the name of the new watch fair and its organization.

I fear this will be the end, pure and simple, of Baselworld…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands and © Sandra Bauknecht

Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk at V&A

Another fashion blockbuster to add to your diary – the V&A is going off-brand after the must-see exhibitions about Alexander McQueen, Christian Dior, Mary Quant and has dedicated an entire show to the ultimate symbol of Japan: the KIMONO, the traditional garment worn by men, women and children.

Fashionable brocade patterns of the Imperial Palace, woodblock print, made by Utagawa Kunisada, 1847-1852, Japan. Museum no. Circ.636 to Circ. 638– 1962. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

In kimono it is the pattern on the surface, rather than the cut of the garment, that is significant. Indications of social status, personal identity and cultural sensitivity are expressed through colour and decoration. The kimono worn by women, particularly the young, were the most richly decorated and it is generally these that survive in collections like that of the V&A.

The exhibition entitled ‘Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk’ traces the traditional Japanese garment’s universal appeal, rich history and ever-evolving style. It is the first major exhibition in Europe with such a focus and reaches from 17th-century rarities to 21st-century streetwear.
Tracing its influence across the work of couturiers such as Yves Saint Laurent and Star Wars costume designers, this demonstrates kimono’s evolving story as well as its rich history.

Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk
29 February – 21 June 2020
Gallery 39 and the North Court

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of V&A

Visiting Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams

Already in April this year, I had the the pleasure to visit one of the most beautiful exhibitions ever, a must for every fashion lover: Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. This retrospective celebrates the founding couturier’s avant-garde spirit and the international destiny of his House, shepherded, after his passing in 1957, by the talent of the Creative Directors who succeeded him.

You still have one week left to indulge in the universe of the French Maison as the exhibition has been extended to September 1st after it sold out within 19 days of its opening.

ABOUT CHRISTIAN DIOR

Christian Dior was born into a wealthy Normandie family in the French seaside town of Granville on January 21, 1905. As a child he shared his mother’s love of gardens. is early passions included architecture and designing fancy dress costumes for his friends. Sent by his parents to study political science in Paris, Dior gravitated towards a bohemian group of friends, including composer Henri Sauguet and artist Christian Bérard.

In 1928, he opened and art gallery, but the business foundered when the Dior family fortune collapsed following the 1929 financial crisis. Forced to find a new way to make a living, Dior took up fashion drawing, eventually working with top couturiers Robert Piguet and Lucien Lelong.

In 1946, Dior founded his own couture house with the backing of textile manufacturer Marcel Boussac. On 12 February 1947, the House of Dior launched its first collection. Dubbed the «New Look» by the press, the collection had an instant and unparalleled influence on fashion around the world. The House of Dior grew rapidly. By 1955 it accounted for over 50% of overseas exports of French haute couture.

In the prime of his career, Christian Dior died suddenly on 24 October 1957. His legacy has continued under the creative directors who have succeeded him at the head of the House of Dior: Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Bohan, Gianfranco Ferré, John Galliano, Raf Simons and Maria Grazia Chiuri.

THE EXHIBITION

Based on the highly successful Musée des Arts Décoratifs exhibition Christian Dior: Couturier du Rêve (on view from 5 July 2017 to 7 January 2018), the show charts seven decades of the continuing importance, influence and creativity of the House of Dior in the fashion world, with an additional section showcasing the story of Dior in Britain.

The famous «Bar Suit» and hat, Haute Couture S/S 1947

Drawn from the extensive Dior Archives, the exhibition presents over 500 objects, with over 200 rare Haute Couture garments shown alongside accessories, fashion photography, film, vintage perfume, original make-up, illustrations, magazines, and Christian Dior’s personal possessions. Unfolding across eleven themes, this unique event invites visitors to immerse themselves inside Christian Dior’s world, tracing the highlights of his life, from his childhood to the creation of his couture house at the end of 1946. A voyage through time that continues with the starring role played by such timeless icons as the eternal «Bar Suit», and legendary looks designed by the visionary tastemaker the couturier was.

Celebrating the Dior art of color, accessories, hats, bags, illustrations, miniature dresses, lipsticks and emblematic fragrances together form a spectrum of colors dear to Christian Dior and, in turn, enrich this exciting encounter with the House. The culmination of this immersive exploration, an exhibit called «Le Salon» showcases the splendor of society soirées, illustrated by spectacular dresses that testify to the virtuosity and savoir-faire of excellence of the Dior haute couture ateliers.

THE NEW LOOK

Christian Dior unveiled his first haute couture collection on 12 February 1947, amid excited anticipation within fashion circles. Offering a radical alternative to the boxy, masculine style of women’s fashion after the Second World War, Dior’s designs caused a sensation. Carmel Snow, editor in chief of Harper’s Bazaar, declared: « It’s quite a revolution, dear Christian, your dresses have such a new look!» The Dior Line showcases ten defining looks made between 1947 and 1957, Christian Dior’s own tenure at the House.

DIOR IN BRITAIN

Exactly to this day, 72 years before, on 26 August 1947, a small group of people stood together in London’s Claridge’s Hotel, hovering around a smartly dressed middle-aged man holding a trilby hat. The celebrated couturier Christian Dior, who just six months earlier had revolutionized fashion with its first «New Look» collection, was in the process of being ambushed by the press. One journalist grilled him as to how he was able to persuade a world short of fabric to embrace his audacious new fashions, to which Dior replied: «I am giving the women the dresses they want. They’re fed up with war restrictions… My full skirts are a release

«I adore the English, dressed not only in tweeds which suit them so well, but also in those flowing dresses, in subtle colours, which they have worn inimitably since the days of GainsboroughChristian Dior, 1957.

Christian Dior designed this couture dress in 1951 specially for the 2st birthday of Princess Margaret.

In his autobiography, Dior affirmed his love for all things English. He was particularly enamoured with the English aristocracy and he admired the grandeur of the great houses and gardens of Britain, as well as British-designed ocean liners, including the Queen Mary, and Savile Row suits.

HISTORICISM

Christian Dior often cited historic periods in his designs – the sinus lines of Belle Époque dresses from the late 1800s and early 1900s: the tightly waisted mid-nineteenth-century styles worn by the French Empress Eugénie, Napoléon III’s wife. The sumptuous silks and dramatic silhouettes of the eighteenth century held a particular fascination. Dior’s premises at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris had a neo-classical façade, medaillon-backed chairs, and white and grey panelling like that of Petit Trianon at Versailles, a colour Dior is said to have revived.

«I thank heaven I lived in Paris in the last years of the Belle EpoqueChristian Dior, 1957

In front of one of my favorite Dior dresses, Look 24 from the F/W 2004 Haute Couture collection by John Galliano.

TRAVEL

Travels explore how travel and different countries and cultures have consistently inspired the various designers at the House of Dior. This section focuses on five of the countries that provided a source of reference for Christian Dior and his successors at the House of Dior: Mexico, India, Egypt, Japan and China.

THE GARDEN

Flowers are emblematic of the Maison and have inspired silhouettes, embroidery and prints, but also the launch of Miss Dior in 1947, the first fragrance created alongside the very first show.
From horticulture to global travel and historicism, the show reveals the sources of inspiration that defined the House of Dior’s aesthetic.

Look 47 from the F/W 2012 Haute Couture collection by Raf Simons for Dior. It was worn by actress Natalie Portman, the face of Miss Dior perfume.

DESIGNERS FOR DIOR

Designers for Dior spotlights the work of the subsequent six key artistic directors since Christian Dior’s death in 1957.

Since 1957 the House of Dior has been led by:
Yves Saint Laurent 1958-60
Marc Bohan 1960-89
Gianfranco Ferré 1989-96
John Galliano 1996-2011 
Raf Simons 
2012-15
Maria Grazia Chiuri 2016 to present
Each creative director has brought a new perspective.

THE ATELIERS

The Ateliers showcases toiles from the Dior Ateliers in a stunning «cabinet of curiosity» style.

«Everything created by human hands expresses something – above all the personality of the creator. The same thing is true with a dress. But since so many people are working on it, the real job is to get all the hands that cut, sew, try on and embroider to express all I have feltChristian Dior, 1954

DIORAMA

Diorama examines the breadth of the House of Dior, from accessories including costume jewellery, hats, shoes and bags, to illustrations, miniature dresses and archive lipstick and perfume, bottles, collected in a kaleidoscopic display. This section spotlights the key creative partners of the House from the past 70 years, including Roger Vivier Stephen Jones, René Gruau, Serge Lutens and Swarovski, Christian Dior’s first choice for crystals to embellish his creations.

How cool! My own outfit was part of the exhibition.

THE BALLROOM

Drawing on his love of costume, it was in his evening dresses and ball gowns that Dior could indulge his imagination and showcase the diverse skills of the haute couture ateliers. Until today, a Dior gown, synonymous with allure and opulence, demonstrates the formidable talents and techniques of Parisian haute couture. It is no wonder that such striking creations have graced numerous red carpets as the choice of film stars and prominent personalities over the past seven decades.

I hope that you have enjoyed following me on my tour through this beautiful exhibition.

LoL, Sandra

Photos taken of the exhibition: © Sandra Bauknecht

My Look: Art Basel

Last week, Art Basel took place, that brings the international artworld together, with leading galleries  from all over showing the works of over 4,000 modern and contemporary artists. Creating an exciting, region-wide art week, Art Basel is one of three shows – others are taking place in Hong Kong, and Miami Beach. I went there for the First Choice Preview on Tuesday, that you can only visit by invitation only, wearing one of my favorite outfits of the season.

My look: Lace-trimmed printed silk-twill bustier topicon, printed stretch-jersey leggingsicon, and gold-tone and printed silk-twill earrings, all by Versaceblack oversized tuxedo jacket by Stella McCartney, classic Paris D’Orsay pumps with bow and metallic-trimmed leather clutch, both by Saint Laurent, Mitza ring by Dior Fine Jewellery, and Tonda 1950 Galaxy by Parmigiani Fleurier.

Inside the fair, there is also the Collectors Lounge, where the event’s main sponsors have their dedicated areas and which you can only visit by invitation. As guest of UBS, I enjoyed my time at the UBS Lounge that was decorated by Costa Rican artist Federico Herrero. Later, I went for a glass of champagne at the Ruinart Lounge that showed the artworks of Brazilian artist Vik Muniz. Luxury beauty brand La Prairie partnered with three up-and-coming Swiss female artists to interpret the beauty, the mystery and the enduring timelessness of the gaze, resulting in the creation of three photographic installations.

I got asked what my favorite artwork is and I replied: «I love fashion – for me that is wearing art on my body». But of course, there were many amazing pieces to be discovered. Enjoy!

A big thank you to my hosts Gabriel Cohen, UBS Wealth Management, and Natascha Lander, UBS Chief Investment Office, Wealth Management.

I hope you like my look and the little excursion into the art world…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht

LVMH Watch Maisons Exhibition in Dubai

This is industry news that I don’t want you to miss. Stéphane Bianchi, President of the LVMH Watch Division, and Jean-Christophe Babin, President of the Bvlgari Group, are announcing the first LVMH Swiss Watch Manufactures Exhibition.

The event will take place at the Dubai Bvlgari Hotel in January 2020 and will include Bvlgari,
TAG Heuer, Hublot and Zenith. The four watch brands will introduce to the international medias and retail partners their watchmaking news 2020.

Dubai Bvlgari Hotel

«In between Geneva in January and Basel in March, we have had in the recent years two major product presentations in the first quarter. This early discovery of our strategies, news and novelties has allowed our media and retail partners to better plan the year ahead and as such we have decided on this set up for 2020 to balance the scheduling of the other events», declared Jean-Christophe Babin.

Watch news this month: TAG Heuer’s second of five limited-edition Monaco timepieces that mark the icon’s 50th anniversary. 

As previously announced, Bvlgari, TAG Heuer, Hublot and Zenith are also confirming in parallel their presence at Baselworld 2020, late April/early May.

«We remain very supportive and loyal to Baselworld and the Swiss watchmaking industry. However, it was not possible for us to go 13 months without a global presentation of our products and brands. This additional event further confirms the LVMH commitment to the strategic and profitable watch category», said Stéphane Bianchi.

Hublot – proud official timekeeper of the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™.

Personally speaking, I find this idea very interesting. Let’s be frank, watch fairs are extremely expensive and not very flexible. In my post about SIHH 2019 from January, I told you already about several changes that are going to happen next year with many brands leaving Baselworld or the SIHH. Solutions were found though, with the Geneva- and the Basel-based shows uniting forces and coordinating their dates from 2020.

Zenith’s new Pilot Type 20 Adventure

Still, the situation isn’t ideal for everyone. I am curious to see LVMH’s own, private «Pre-Baselworld event» in Dubai, in January 2020. The location is an interesting choice as well… stay tuned!

LoL, Sandra

An example of Bvlgari’s new watch creations for 2019

Photos: Courtesy of the Brands