Spring-Summer 2010 Haute Couture Show, Pavillon Cambon Capucines
Making of the press kit, Studio 7L, Paris
Chanel has installed a pair of dolls inspired by its "Paris-Moscou" fashion show in the Printemps department store. The two window marionettes, Princess Nadejda and the Grand Duke Dimitri, are wearing miniature pieces from the collection. The two figures are contrasted with giant, hand-painted matriochkas, which stand over 16 feet tall, inside the store.
It is in this antique armchair, made of sculpted walnut and covered with white satin, that Gabrielle Chanel was photographed by Horst in 1937. The photographer later confided that Mademoiselle Chanel was very pensive during this sitting, and attributed this mood to a love affair. But after the shoot, nobody knew what happened to the armchair. Karl Lagerfeld found it in an auction in Monte-Carlo in the 1980s, recognising it as precisely the one from Horst's photo. This is how the armchair returned to Gabrielle Chanel's apartment.Made by Chevigny, the great 18th century furniture maker, this particular armchair displays unusual proportions that are explained by its origin as a "half-bathtub", whose wooden panelling (intended as a water basin) was cut and transformed into an armchair covered with white satin. The bronze legs indicate the original presence of wheels, which would have allowed the bathtub to be moved from one room to another.