25 October - 13 December 2015, Free Admission
Leather Forever celebrates Hermès’ relationship with leather, the first material tamed by the house. The exhibition takes visitors on a poetic journey exploring Hermès’ love of this fine material, presenting items from Hermès’ past as well as some of its latest creations.
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- ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
At Hermès, leather has always been more than a material. It is a world, a language that speaks to and inspires the five senses. Grain and flesh: the words speak volumes. Leather has its textures and perfumes. Its colours. It looks beautiful. It smells good. Tanned, dyed, cut, assembled, stitched, patinated, polished – it sings when it is crafted and when it is caressed. It has presence. Transforming, refining, embellishing and blending it with other materials, giving it multiple appearances, shaping it to clients’ desires, letting it live lives that may be adventurous or discreet: that is the Hermès passion.
To relate and share this passion, the house has conceived Leather Forever, a travelling exhibition that is now calling in at ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.
Hermès was founded by Thierry Hermès in Paris in 1837, as a house of master harness, and later, saddle makers. It is by handling the finest leathers — chosen, cut, sewn and polished with expert skill – that six generations of enterprising craftsmen have learned and passed on the values that inspire Hermes’ dynamism: attachment to quality, perfectionism (even in hidden details), and respect for time, all conjoined with creative verve.
We hope visitors will enjoy this playful evocation of the relationship between Hermes and leather, a tale with many a twist yet to come. Behind the fun and games, though, they may also find some simple, profound answers to that desire for things of lasting worth, a desire that is so powerfully resonant in this new century.
Rooms 1 & 2: Savoir Faire
Room 3: Time Savers
Room 4: The Horse, The First Client
Room 5: The Spirit of the Nomad
Room 6: Discretion and Simplicity
Room 7: Fasteners or Beauty Spots?
Room 8: On the Beltway
Room 9: Variations on Kelly and Birkin
Two bags. Two legends.
Both were born under a muse’s inspiration. World famous, immediately recognisable, soon both were inspirations in their own right. Clients, both famous and discreet, wanted “the same, but different”, and added their own personal touch. Artists have played a thousand variations on these two themes. The poets and composers of leather and colour have come up with endless incarnations. Miniaturised. Coloured. Outsize. Historiated. Married. Crossover. Amused. Punk. Jazz. Folk. Rock. Baroque.
Room 10: When Dreams Become Reality
Room 11: The Patina of Time
Room 12: Star Bags
Film Screening: Hearts and Crafts
“Hearts and Crafts” is a documentary that pays tribute to the artisans of the numerous Hermès métiers.
Directors Frédéric Laffont and Isabelle Dupuy-Chavanat shine a light on the men and women who bring the house's objects to life. In the four corners of France, from Paris to the Ardennes, from the Lyonnais to Lorraine, they opened the doors of the house's workshops to lift the veil on those who master the gestures and the savoir-faire of the saddler, the leather craftsperson, the crystal and glassmaker, the jeweller…
Laffont and Dupuy-Chavanat have captured the sounds of leather and crystal, the song of silk and metal, the words of the men and women and also their silences. In their cinematic testimonial they have brought together these sparks of life, enthusiasm, pride and passion, as each craftsperson assembles a handbag or a piece of jewellery. Step by step. Meticulously. With passion and respect, in the quest for excellence.
View the film stills and teaser below.