Louis Vuitton @ The Strand


I wish I could say that I was impressed by Louis Vuitton’s Series 3 exhibition currently open to the public on The Strand. Unfortunately, I was left feeling a little indifferent. Yes it was well presented and full to the brim with glitz and glamour. However, it is a carbon copy of all the other shows that luxury brands have been putting on in London over the last few years in a bid to drive up sales.

If you had never visited any of the ridiculous number of Hermes exhibitions over the last few years, or been to either the Dior or Prada shows at Harrods then you would probably been dazzled by the Vuitton display. The show on The Strand has holographic image projections and more designer bags than any girl would even dream of. One can see videos of the runway shows in Paris as well as demonstrations of how the handbags are made. There is even an in house worker on hand to emphasise the hand-made nature of the items – most likely in a bid to awe the viewer into justifying spending money they do not have on an overpriced bag that they do not need.

I may be giving the Louis Vuitton show a harsh judgment. However, if like me, you have gone to the other fashion related exhibitions dotted around London over the years, you would probably be left with the same opinion. Perhaps this is not helped by the fact that I do not really like Louis Vuitton at all. That said, I was blown away by the 2012 retrospective display at Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris. The problem in London however, is that whoever was in charge of curating the display, merely swapped out the items of an old Hermes exhibition for Louis Vuitton products.

If unlike me you are a fan of Louis Vuitton, or you have not been religiously attending London’s fashion exhibitions over the past five years, then you are sure to love the show. However, if you have been to any recent displays, I personally wouldn’t bother to make the trip.

Louis Vuitton: Series 3 is on display at 180 The Strand until 18 October

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Lizzy Vartanian Collier is a London-based writer with a special interest in contemporary Middle Eastern Art. She has a BA in Art History and an MA in Contemporary Art and Art Theory of Asia and Africa from the School of Oriental and African Studies. She runs the Gallery Girl blog and has written for After Nyne, Arteviste, Canvas Magazine, Harper's Bazaar Arabia, Ibraaz, Jdeed Magazine, ReOrient and Suitcase Magazine. Lizzy is also curator of Arab Women Artists Now - AWAN 2018 (London).

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