With Korea´s booming fashion scene and appreciation for high-end luxury, in combination with Seoul slowly becoming one of the “it” Metropolis around the globe, that even Karl Lagerfeld is an avid fan of. It was not surprising to know that Seoul was one of the few selected locations, among others like London or Hong Kong to hold Chanel´s latest exhibit, Chanel Mademoiselle Privé.
The exhibition held at, D Museum, collected pieces able to immerse the viewer right onto the spirit of this representative brand.
Very well structured and similar to a guided path of “Chanel through the ages”, the event included everything from the most basic items, materials and colors that were a source of inspiration to help build the brand at its starting point, under the legend that Gabrielle Chanel (Coco Chanel, as know by many) once was, to the current style led by Karl Lagerfeld. The exhibit did not leave many elements untouched.
This “free admission” Exhibit started with a quick check in at D Museum´s first floor, followed by unicorn like, iridescent steps that walked right on to the first part of the display, portraying the beginning of it all.
The first section presented central elements in Chanel´s style, sources of inspiration to the brand that have been continued until this same day. Hats with basic shapes, pearls; one of Coco´s staples and even art representing the designer´s “lucky” numbers.
The second room, emulated the creation process of one of the most iconic perfumes on the market. Portraying everything that takes part into Chanel nº 5 from smell, to color, the basic flowery elements and even the noises. Chanel nº 5, that bottle that everyone has seen, at least once, the “parfum” that even timeless celebrities, such as Marilyn Monroe, claimed as the one and only thing to wear to sleep.
The third area, had basic elements part of the creation process. Fabrics in multiple shades of ivory, eggshell and whites. All a beautiful blend of colors, materials and textures, with a subtle light projection on the background that replicated the creation process in an atelier, where even the background sounds emulated the ones of classic sewing machinery.
As Coco Chanel, once said:
“Women think of all colors except the absence of color. I have said that black has it all. White too. Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.”
The whole exhibit stayed true to Chanel´s words, being even more obvious on this section where the black of the chains used on the classic flap bags, stood against the light-colored fabrics. Light walls containing small annotations, basic stitching and pattern shaping, also added simple but thoughtful details to the whole experience.
It would not be South Korea without some technology, so of course VR was also available. Using the app that was needed to attend the exposition, you could access a small VR display when pointing at this “basic” door, that was so representing of this exhibit.
Haute couture, was also powerfully showcased. The different styles and stages that Chanel´s designs have gone through, were represented with beautiful evening gowns, located before and after moving panels of renowned people in the media industry posing with some of the same creations from the brand.
Behind the attires and moving panels, Chanel´s high jewelry had also its place to shine. Representative pieces, mainly Bijoux de Diamants collection´s re-editions, were matching diamonds and toned down colors in aesthetic and showcased on interesting settings, in which low lights, metal, crystal and even cages were helping set the mood.
As for the last part, a photo gallery and a small workshop to help visitors discover Chanel´s crafmanships were the final touches.
Together with the never to be forgotten souvenir shop and an extra present right before leaving, a small fabric tote with the logo of the exhibit, which I found to be particularly cute and thoughtful.
Workshops were only available in Seoul during weekends, possibly as a small prize for those brave ones that ventured to go to a renowned event held in Seoul during the weekend, daring to wait for hours on line, needless to say I was not one of them.
-Mademoiselle Privé, Chanel exhibit in Seoul.