The house of Hermès throws a fabulous surprise for us for these Christmas festivities: the Grand Palais has been holding a magnificent free exhibition from November 8th to December 3rd, Hermès à tire-d’aile. A proper tribute to the talented designer of the windows of Hermès from 1978 to 2013, the Tunisian Leïla Menchari, by reconstructing eight of the iconic windows of the flagship store at the 24, rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. The journey that is waiting for us in the rooms of the famous Parisian monument is simply extraordinary:
and it is also thanks to the scenography designed by Natalie Crinière, who can’t stop marveling us by her projects, from the lavish Dior’s exhibition at the Arts Décoratifs to the most recent Musée Yves Saint Laurent.
There’s a room for Leïla Menchari’s imagination, a painter by training, with her fine arts qualifications from Tunis then Paris, arrived to Hermès in 1961 and become artistic director in charge of the windows of the Hermès stores since 1978. Leïla Menchari is a born storyteller. Nicknamed the « reine mage », « queen of enchantment » by her great friend, the French author Michel Tournier, Leïla has always drawn her inspiration from her homeland, Tunisia, country where she has always returned.
The journeys where Leïla leads us are exotic, magical and enchanting; these are oriental dreams, stories of faraway lands, from Africa to India, that plunge us into an enchanting atmosphere. And those universes are even more charming thanks to the collaboration between the designer and the different artist she chose, such as for example Christian Renonciat, the author of the giant sculpture of the winged foot at the exhibition’s entrance evoking Hermès the god, the Olympus messenger homonym of the patronymic of the house’s founders but also of the beautiful horse in wood and steel of the last window.
Or else Thomas Boog, the author of the wonderful creations made from shells for the window all in green on the theme of the sea. The meeting of two geniuses in order to enhance the unique craftsmanship of the house that since 1837 continues to dazzle us through its essentials like the iconic bag Kelly.
Whether you are fond of fashion and leather goods, of art or plainly of fantastic tales, this exhibition is made for you. So just go, moreover it is free!