Tag Archives: art blogger

Yves Saint Laurent Extended Exhibition

‘Yves Saint Laurent: Style is Eternal’. The first ever exhibition – in the UK – of the French designer Yves Saint Laurent’s life, and work, came to a close less than a week ago.

I decided it was an opportunity too good to miss, so before the exhibition closed its doors for good, I took myself over to the French Château-style museum in the North of England to have a look!This is just a small look through the magnificent display put on by The Bowes Museum in collaboration with Fondation Pierre Bergé – so follow me through…Entrance to the museum is free for Art Fund card holders – and still relatively inexpensive for general admission – so what are you waiting for?

The exhibition was scheduled to end mid October, but due to high demand was extended until early November. And so, tickets in hand, we entered the large space exhibition space on the first floor.The Bowes Museum pride themselves on their information booklets. They are printed up and freely available to inform in great detail about different elements of the exhibition.Yves Saint Laurent’s famed work was not squeezed into the textiles room, or into the contemporary white cube gallery space that sits opposite. Style is Eternal spread out to fill both spaces and the room in between!

Rather than move the existing french decor interior pieces that live on permanent display in the center room, large black gauze sheeting draped down from the ceiling to floor.These were printed with information about Yves Saint Laurent brand as well as beautifully lettered quotes from the designer himself.The first room had a wall filled with a huge variation of hat designs. These are a clear demonstration of how important the silhouette are to the central designs of everything produced by Yves Saint Laurent.

Notice that these are all produced in a cream neutral fabric. These are a form of ‘toiles’ which are best described as a three-dimensional drawing. They are a crafted design of the original sketch before committing to specific fabrics and adornments. So these hats on display are crafted purely to experiment and test the dynamics of silhouette – hence the beautiful curves and lines!Other displays included original paper doll cut-outs and designs that Yves Saint Laurent himself created! These were designed in mini collections to fit a doll he would make himself from photographs of famous women in magazines.The first room of the exhibition collaborated with the already existing space of The Bowes Museum Textile Room. Inside glass cabinets were situated historical costume dating back decades at a time. The end of each cabinet then housed an iconic design piece from Yves Saint Laurent that tied in a motif of the cabinet in some way.This is another example of how ‘fashion’ is a temporal creation, constantly looping back through time for inspiration and design techniques.Between the aisles were framed examples of Yves Saint Laurent collection mock-ups. Featuring notes, and fabric swatches for different garb ensembles.After reaching the end of the room, we sat and watched a two part documentary which featured an interview with Yves Saint Laurent himself. The rest covered the methods of the work rooms and the design processes behind creating a collection.The center of The Textiles Room was transformed into a display case of original ‘toiles’.Displayed together, the mannequins allow you to really appreciate the craft and detail put into this form of a ‘draft’ tailoring. The work is perfected over and over again with the neutral fabric to achieve the perfect lines and fall on the model. The jackets even feature mock buttons!After we felt we’d had our fill of the first room, we hurried over to the main exhibition space that held mannequin after mannequin adorned in finished ensembles from a huge number of collections! From Sumptuous Luxury…To Art Pop…To Magic and Mystery. The costumes from Yves Saint Laurent were curated and exhibited by style rather than chronological collection. This really allowed each section of the room to make an enormous impact!Follow on from the mannequin displays and you reach a shocking pink coloured corridor that looped around the back of the room.This featured framed photographs and sketches from other artists that used Yves Saint Laurent as this inspiration and focus.

And after seeing an exhibition like this – why wouldn’t you?So in depth, so carefully curated, such a unique experience! I felt very lucky to wander around the first British exhibition of the famed designers work and life!


Not-so-pompous at the Pompidou {Paris}

This was my second visit to Paris, and top of my list was a trip to the Centre George Pompidou!Situated in the centre of Paris city, and the 4th arrondissement, this enormous modern art gallery is a prime location to spend an entire day whether you’re a history buff with art knowledge of not!

The architectural structure is obviously not the expected traditional Parisian style of many other art galleries across the city. Instead the outside can be likened to building scaffolding mixed with a child playpark jungle-gym!Buy your tickets (if you’re under 18 years, they are free!) and head up the external escalator scaling the outside of the huge structure.

We got there in the late afternoon after looking around the pretty kick-ass shopping spots in the area. Even though it was after four o’clock we still had multiple hours to trawl the slightly emptier halls of the art gallery!The top floor spans from start to finish in artistic chronological order of the modern art period. After two years of studying History of Art this was a totally new experience with knowledge from studies.

There is so much to see, and a great deal of variety! Take your time or rush through – regardless, you’ll enjoy just about everything on display.And finding stripes was an extra bonus… I love camouflaging into the artworks! 

T-shirt dress – Missguided

Shoes – Zara

Bag – Asos

Sunglasses – Thrifted

When you’ve had your fill of the glorious collection of modern art (with big names to boast – remember) you can head down to the floor below to dive into the contemporary art!It’s notable that the collection and pieces on loan that are on display change. Over two years since I visited the Pompidou previously, and the entire floor were filled with pieces I hadn’t seen before!

Some abstract and intriguing artworks sprawl the gallery, and other pieces take up entire rooms. On installation in one of the main rooms was an artwork called ‘Cafe Little Boy’. Jean-Luc Vilmouth designed a room composed of green painted walls, tables and stools using the same paint as school boards; the installation invites visitors to writes, draw and express themselves with chalk on any surface in the room, in any way they please.The room is very controlled and has a maximum of five people at a time – which was no problem for the quite nature of the gallery in the early evening.

This artwork is a development from a previous work entitled ‘Little Boy Coffee’ from 2002. The work was originated in the history of the primary school Fukuromachi in Hiroshima which was destroyed by the explosion of the atomic bomb (nicknamed ‘Little Boy’). Only one wall remained standing of the building, carrying a lone chalk-board, on which survivors wrote messages to their loved ones.We each separated to privately write personal messages on sections of the walls. We found useable pieces of the small stubs of chalk that were strewn around the room, and wrote messages to our loved ones and our lost ones.Before leaving the peacefully quite room, I found a blank painted stool and left a different kind of message…


It’s hard to photograph the diverse range of contemporary pieces on display, but you can definitely see a change in scale from the modern art based floor above.

Large lights, and objects suspended from the ceilings and huge painted walls that spread across over 30m are just a handful of the pieces we marvelled at. We spent at least three hours wandering through the open rooms of the two floors, and didn’t even progress the floors below, specialised exhibition (these change even more frequently than the artworks on display) or the options in the cinema – a second revisit might have to be on the cards!

Have Your Cake, and Eat It Too


An exhibition made entirely of cake – and I had the tickets to the evening event that meant I was going to get to tuck into the exclusive, hand-crafted creations too!A couple of weeks ago I eagerly bought tickets to the Edible Art Exhibition that was to be held in the Leeds Art Gallery, at Munro House, over the Indie Food Festival. About a week before the show, a letter arrived in the post. Hand inscribed, and hand wrapper; the bright orange envelope contained a glossy flyer for the event, and my tickets of entry – two pink forks! This was a special, one-day-only, event and I was now fully prepared!I decided to head to Leeds during the day and visit the exhibition before the exclusive evening event I had snagged tickets to. I wanted to see the cake art without huge crowds of people in the gallery space, as well as in their full glory before they were cut into! The gallery was smaller than I expected, but had very cool vibes – I’d definitely recommend a visit any day (even when there is not cake involved).

If you want anymore other info on the gallery, I’ll have more photos after the cake. But for now, let’s just get straight into the cake creations!The gallery is split up into roughly two spaces, but the flow between them is fairly fluid as you can move around the constructed walls through two different walkways. ‘The Menu’ was hung slap-bang on the wall facing the visitor when you come in the main entrance!

The Tattooed Bakers were commissioned by The Leeds Gallery, and Leeds Indie Food Festival officials, to create four, life sized, works-of-art by famous artist. Each creation was a different flavour/cake and ‘The Menu’ laid these out very clearly!

The first; a traditional shortbread with sugar paste letters and decoration. This piece is the recreation of ‘No Chance’ by Tracey Emin, exhibited in the 5th British Art Show in 1999.The second section of gallery housed the other three cakes, as well as a display of food themed photography and typography based prints!The next cake piece; a chocolate and prune fruitcake, covered in marzipan. This piece is the recreation of ‘Mr. S**t Sex’ by Grayson Perry, exhibited in the 5th British Art Show in 1999. The decorative images was created with sugar paste, printed rice paper and gold leaf! The third cake; a dairy free, lemon sponge cake with “buttercream” and sugarpaste frosting. Not quite vegan (because of the use of sugarpaste) but the creation of a dairy free art work meant the evening eating-fest was catering to a wide variety of people! This is a recreation of ‘Nud Cycladic 14’ by Sarah Lucas, exhibited in the 7th British Art Show in 2009.And the final, show stopper of all the cakes, created by The tattooed Bakers, stood in a coloured perspex box in the centre of the gallery space!

A cake version of lamb in formaldehyde; a rainbow sponge with vanilla buttercream and sugarpaste decoration. This is a recreation of ‘Away from the Flock’ by Damien Hirst, exhibited in the 4th British Art Show in 1994.The Edible Art Exhibition was designed to raise awareness that the British Art Show is coming to Leeds in October! Sections of the walls featured printed typography specifically for the big exhibition; promoting the gallery itself and the social media tag to advertise with!

The main walls of the gallery were lined with large framed photograph, and clever printed typography images hung up with large silver bulldog clips! Some prints featured unique forms of displaying ingredients or recipes, and all of them were exquisitely themed around food!

The main feature wall of wall typography advertising The Great Edible Art Exhibition could been seen from the cafe – known as Cafe 164. And since we had made our way through the main gallery, it seemed the perfect time for a coffee break and chill time in the cafe!Neon signs, decoration, funky lighting fixtures and free wifi; Cafe 164 is one rad place to hang out! I’m a sucker for neon lights as it is, and so the giant birthday cake hung above the leather booth seating had a special place in my heart after seeing all the cake art in the gallery!Cafe 164 is open for anyone to come, drink coffee, have a snack, and even work. A very cool spot to come is your free in Leeds! Before leaving, I decided to check out the ‘gift shop’ area for the art gallery that you could see through the window-wall of Cafe 164. The entrance hall area is designed with a 2-Dimensional illusioned living room interior, similar to printed Pop Artwork from Roy Lichtenstein…The ‘gift stop’ was spread across two rooms of space, and is basically the same size as the gallery! The shelves are crammed with unique arty creations for sale. Notebooks, stationery and loads in between with gorgeous designs and colour palettes.

The ‘gift shop’ has one of the widest selection of niche art magazines that I’ve come across in one location – I recommend a visit for anyone buying for an art-loving friend or loved one! There is loads of choice!The last room of the ‘gift shop’ has more for sale. When I visited there were beautiful printed, wall pieces for sale. These were themed around creative theoretical beer logos! This room had a very cool, minimalistic interior layout – definitely worth checking out!After looking through all that was on offer (and talking myself out of some very expensive limited edition hardback art magazines), it was time to head out for an early dinner and wander around Leeds before returning for the special eating-fest in the evening!

Keep an eye out later this week for the *second slice* of this amazing event – hope this blogpost has given you your fill for now!