The Master

The Master

Text: Christopher Barnard

A visionairy whose legacy can never be questioned, Valentino Garavani is the subject of a new exhibition that celebrates his life and haute couture designs, opening this month at London’s Somerset House. Valentino: Master of Couture is an assemblage of 130 handmade creations, worn by Grace Kelly, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jackie Kennedy Onassis, and other fabulous women from the realms of red carpet and royalty. The pieces, procured from this highfalutin clientele, make up the designer’s most comprehensive couture exhibit to date. “Each of these designs has a beautiful story,” says Valentino. “The atelier crafted each so diligently by hand, taking hours, sometimes days to complete.” The exhibition is broken into three sections: a room full of personal photographs; an actual runway one can strut down; and beyond Princess Marie Chantal’s exquisite wedding dress (featuring 10 different types of lace), a virtual museum—the icon’s latest endeavor. It’s an enriching experience for any fashionphile.

Valentino: Master of Couture runs November 29–March 3 at Somerset House

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