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 aka Gallery Girl is a writer and curator based in London. Her work has been featured in publications including Dazed, Hyperallergic and Vogue Arabia. She was curator of Perpetual Movement during AWAN Festival 2018 and in 2019 had a residency at the Lab at Darat Al Funun in Amman, Jordan. She has also worked with Armenia Art Fair for its inaugural edition and previously worked as an editor at I.B.Tauris Publishers. In 2019 she co-founded Arsheef, Yemen’s first contemporary art gallery. She has given workshops at Manara Culture in Amman, Jordan and Victoria and Albert Museum in London, UK. As of 2020 she is currently in law school, with the ambition of greater understanding the intersection between art and the law.

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