May 27th 2017 - February 18th 2018
Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, London


In May, the Victoria and Albert Museum opened the first ever UK exhibition exploring the work of Cristóbal Balenciaga and his profound and continuing influence on modern fashion. It will be the first of its kind to look at his unique approach to making and will showcase pieces by his protégés and contemporary designers working in the same innovative way today.

Cassie Davies-Strodder, V&A exhibition curator, said: “Cristóbal Balenciaga was one of the most influential fashion designers of the 20th century. Revered by his contemporaries, including Coco Chanel and Hubert de Givenchy, his exquisite craftsmanship, pioneering use of fabric and innovative cutting set the tone for the modernity of the late 20th century fashion. At the height of his success in the 1950s when Christian Dior’s ‘New Look’ was the dominant force in fashion, Balenciaga went against the grain to revolutionise the female silhouette, creating a more modern, architectural aesthetic that stood away from the body rather than restricting it. For the first time, this exhibition will take a forensic look at Balenciaga’s most iconic ensembles from the V&A’s collections to reveal what made his designs so exceptional. His lasting impact on fashion will be explored through the work of those who trained with him and through recent garments by designers including Molly Goddard, Demna Gvasalia and J.W. Anderson who reflect the legacy of his vision today.”


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