Exhibition of 300 French fashion, jewellery pieces to open in June in Hong Kong

Exhibition of 300 French fashion, jewellery pieces to open in June in Hong Kong

An exhibition featuring more than 300 pieces of French fashion, jewellery and accessories from the late 18th to the early 20th centuries will open in June in Hong Kong to mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between China and France.

“The Adored Body” exhibition, which will only be shown in the city, will be hosted by the Hong Kong Palace Museum.

It is among four exhibitions held at the West Kowloon Cultural District this year to celebrate relations between the two countries. It will also be the Asian debut of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, which is called “Paris’ most comprehensive collection of historical French fashion”.

The show will run from 26 June to14 October. Photo: Handout

Palace Museum director Louis Ng Chi-wa said this type of shows could “encourage dialogue between China and the rest of the world in arts and culture

“Through the engaging stories behind these exquisite exhibits, we hope to instil visitors’ interest in the history of French fashion, as well as its evolution across time and impact on global fashion, textile and design.”

Christine Macel, director of Musee des Arts Decoratifs, Paris, said the show was a celebration of Sino-French relations.

“This exhibition … is an opportunity to present to the Hong Kong public for the first time an exceptional collection of costumes, accessories and jewellery, flagships of our collection, and to celebrate together the links that have united China and France for 60 years,” she said.

The exhibition is set to be divided into five thematic sections. Photo: Handout

On Monday, Chinese President Xi Jinping met his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, to commemorate 60 years of diplomatic ties during the former’s first visit to Europe in five years and third trip to France since taking office in 2013.

The biggest display of historical French men’s and women’s fashion from 1770 to 1910 in Asia will include a gown by pioneer fashion designer Charles Frederick Worth and bell-shaped crinoline dresses, which were the trend in France and across Europe and worn by aristocrats in the mid-19th century.

Worth, or the “father of haute couture”, dressed the likes of Napoleon III’s wife Empress Eugenie, who was regarded as a fashion trendsetter.

A museum director says the show is a celebration of Sino-French relations. Photo: Handout

He was known for using live models to define the concept of fashion shows and arguably was the first to sew branded labels into apparels at that time.

The exhibition, divided into five thematic sections, will allow visitors to virtually try on clothes, accessories and jewellery, with workshops and lectures on offer.

The exhibition will run from June 26 to October 14. Tickets are priced at HK$150 (US$19) for adults, while concession ones are available at HK$75. Tickets to the show also allow access to other exhibitions at the Palace Museum.

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