Haute Couture at Versailles
LE XVIIIel AU GÔUT DU JOUR – THE 18 th CENTURY BACK IN FASHION
Couturiers and fashion designers in the Grand Trianon.
VERSAILLES: This summer at Grand Trianon, The Palace of Versailles and the Musée Galliera present an exhibition in the apartments of the Grand Trianon dedicated to the influence of the 18th century on modern fashion. Between haute couture and ready-to-wear, fifty models by great designers of the 20th century dialogue with costumes and accessories from the 18th century and show how this century is quoted with constant interest.
These pieces come from the archives of maisons de couture and from the Galliera’s collections.
Moreover the exhibition mentions the artistic sources of inspiration coming from the history of art and culture which has nourished the couture designers creativity.
Influencing all the European courts, French culture of the 18th century was embodied by Madame de Pompadour, Madame Du Barry and even more so Marie-Antoinette – paragons of frivolity that has always fascinated the cinema, literature and the fashion world. With its huge powdered hairstyles, whalebone stays and hoop petticoats, flounces, frills and furbelows, garden swings and whispered confidences, the 18th century brought artifice to its paroxysm…
A fantasized style which gives free rein to interpretation: the Boué Sisters in the twenties, panniers and lace in their robes de style.
Christian Dior and Pierre Balmain offer evening gowns embroidered with typically 18th century decorative patterns, Vivienne Westwood brings back brazen courtesans, fashionable Belles are corsetted by Azzedine Alaïa, Karl Lagerfeld for Chanel invites Watteau with his robes à la française, the Maison Christian Dior adorns duchesses with delicate attires, Christian Lacroix drapes his queens with brocades lavishly gleaming with gemstones and Olivier Theyskens for Rochas summons up the ghost of Marie-Antoinette in a Hollywood film.
While the elegant simplicity in black and white is played by Yves Saint Laurent, Martin Margiela transforms men’s garments into women’s,
Nicolas Ghesquière for Balenciaga enhances women in little marquis dressed with lace and Alexander McQueen for Givenchy clothes his marquises in vests embroidered with gold thread. With Yohji Yamamoto, court dresses are destructured and so does Rei Kawakubo with riding coats. While Thierry Mugler hides oversized hoops under the dresses, Jean Paul Gaultier puts them upside down.
Couturiers and fashion designers invite you to discover this 18th century back in fashion, in the Grand Trianon.
8 July to 9 October 2011 – Grand Trianon – Versailles.’
The Grand Trianon (French pronunciation: [ɡʁɑ̃ tʁijanɔ̃]) was built in the northwestern part of the Domain of Versailles at the request ofLouis XIV, as a retreat for the King and his maîtresse en titre of the time, the marquise de Montespan, and as a place where the King and invited guests could take light meals (collations) away from the strict étiquette of the Court.
The façade was made of white and blue Delft-style “porcelain” (ceramic) tiles from the French manufactures of Rouen, Lisieux, Neversand Saint-Cloud. Construction began in 1670 and was finished in 1672.
By 1687, the fragile ceramic tiles had deteriorated to such a point that Louis XIV ordered the demolition of the pavilion and its replacement with one made of stronger material. Commission of the work was entrusted to the architect Jules Hardouin Mansart. Hardouin-Mansart’s new structure was twice the size of the porcelain pavilion, and the material used was red marble of Languedoc.
Begun in June 1687, the new construction (as we see it today) was finished in January 1688 and inaugurated by Louis XIV and his secret wife, the marquise de Maintenon, during the summer of 1688.
The Grand Trianon would often play host to the King and his wife. The first set of Grands appartments lasted from 1688 to 1691. The next was from 1691 till 1701; then 1701 till his death at Versailles in 1715.
From 1703 to 1711, the building was the residence of le Grand Dauphin.
In the later years of Louis XIV’s reign, the Trianon was the residence of the King’s sister-in-law Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate, Dowager Duchess of Orléans and known at court as Madame. Her son, Philippe d’Orléans, future son-in-law of Louis XIV and Regent of France, lived there with his mother. Louis XIV even ordered the construction of a larger wing to the Grand Trianon which was begun in 1708 by Mansart; this wing, called Trianon-sous-Bois, housed the Orléans family, including Louis XIV’s legitimised daughter Françoise-Marie de Bourbon.
The King’s youngest grandson Charles de France and his wife Marie Louise Élisabeth d’Orléans also resided there. The Orléans family, who had apartments at the Palace of Versailles, were later replaced by Françoise-Marie’s sister; the Duchess of Bourbon, Madame la Duchesse lived at the Trianon and later built the Palais Bourbon in Paris, the design of the palace being copied on that of the Trianon.
Louis XV did not bring any changes to the Grand Trianon. In 1740 and 1743, his father-in-law, Stanislas Leszczynski, former king of Poland stayed there during his visits to Versailles. Later, it was during a stay at Trianon that Louis XV fell ill before being transported to the Palace of Versailles, where he died on 10 May 1774.
No more than his predecessor had, Louis XVI brought no structural modifications to the Grand Trianon. His wife, Queen Marie Antoinette, who preferred the Petit Trianon, gave a few theatrical representations in the galerie des Cotelle, a gallery with paintings by Jean l’Aîné Cotelle representing the bosquets of Versailles and Trianon.
Napoleon lived at Trianon with his second wife Marie Louise of Austria.
The next royals to live at Trianon were the King and Queen of the French, Louis Philippe I and his Italian wife Maria Amalia of the Two Sicilies; he was a descendant of the Regent Philippe d’Orléans and she was a niece of Marie Antoinette.
In 1920, the Grand Trianon hosted the negotiations and signing of the Treaty of Trianon, which left Hungary with less than one-third of its pre-World War I land size. To the Hungarians, the word “Trianon” remains to this day the symbol of one of their worst national disasters.
A popular site for tourists visiting Versailles, it is also one of the French Republic presidential residences used to host foreign officials, for exemple has HM Queen Elisabeth II of Great Britain been staying here in the guest part during her official visit.
Please enjoy our presentation of the new Balenciaga Museum in Getaria, North- Spain, which was opened June 7th 2011 by HM the Queen of Spain
See also: http://cristobalbalenciagamuseoa.com