Balenciaga Parisby Pamela Golbin, Nicolas Ghesquiere
Balenciaga Paris traces the designer's collections year by year, from 1937 to 2006, using photos, press cuttings, sketches, and other archival material. The book explores two main periods in depth: 1937-1968, when Cristobal Balenciaga made his name during Paris's golden/i>/i>
A sumptuous retrospective of one of the greatest houses in international fashion
Balenciaga Paris traces the designer's collections year by year, from 1937 to 2006, using photos, press cuttings, sketches, and other archival material. The book explores two main periods in depth: 1937-1968, when Cristobal Balenciaga made his name during Paris's golden age of fashion; and 1996-2006, charting the dramatic revival of the House of Balenciaga under Nicolas Ghesqui�re, one of the most widely admired and celebrated new designers in contemporary fashion. He has co-directed the book's production with Pamela Golbin, curator at the Musée de la Mode et du Textile, Paris, who has compiled the text.
Described by Christian Dior as "the master of us all," Balenciaga's bold genius with cut, line, and fabric mark him out as one of the most daring and original designers in the world of haute couture. His virtuoso command of technique and imaginative exuberance recall his Spanish roots as well as assuring his place in the pantheon of twentieth-century style and elegance. 280 illustrations, 200 in color.
- W W Norton & Co Inc
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 11.10(w) x 14.20(h) x 1.00(d)
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As a history of Cristobal Balenciaga, the founder of the original Balenciaga house of haute couture, this volume is quite good in its informative and studied approach to the origins and success of M. Balenciaga. However, as an exhibition catalog it is, in a word, worthless. Nowhere in its 227 pages does it show any of the creations displayed in the Parisian exhibition. All associated with this publication should be ashamed for offering this as an exhibition catalog and should have paid heed to such genuine exhibition catalogs as The Philadelphia Museum of Art's 2003 Shocking! The Art and Fashion of Elsa Schiaparelli by Dilys Blum (at this juncture the absolute gold standard for Costume exhibition catalogs) or The Costume Institute's 1996 Christian Dior by Richard Martin and Harold Koda. Ms. Blum accomplishes what Balenciaga is unable to accomplish, the mix of history within the context of a present reality. By this I mean, she offers the reader a detailed, exciting read by supporting her text with specially commissioned photographic examples of the creations actually displayed at her museum during the exhibition. For me, such exhibitions are marvelous, as one is afforded to see just how certain creations have weathered the storm of time, something not afforded in the Balenciaga catalog. Also, while I grasp the marketing reason behind this particular catalog, it should be pointed-out that Balenciaga, as it exists today, is no longer a house of haute couture, but a resurrected brand of ready-to-wear apparel. Anyone viewing the original creations of M. Balenciaga should be able to see at once, how ill-suited is Nicolas Ghesquière to be passed-off as the torch bearer of Cristobal Balenciaga. It's perfectly horrendous to view page after page of M. Balenciaga's exquisite creations to then be faced with the ugliness of M. Ghesquière's.