February 22, 2018

Secrets of Couture at Sven Harry's Art Museum

This past weekend I visited Sven Harry's Konstmuseum (art museum) with a friend to see their fashion exhibition "Secrets of Couture" (running until April 2nd). This is one of my favorite of the smaller museums in Stockholm. Sven Harry's has a great location in the Vasa Park, in the Vasastan neighborhood, and they generally have an interesting variation of exhibitions (modern art, photography, sculpture, fashion, etc.). No visit to the museum is complete without a visit to their rooftop sculpture terrace and to see the replica of Sven-Harry's home there (with private art collection). They also have a nice café and restaurant which are worth a visit.
But back to their current exhibition which looks at the world of haute couture fashion, how it fits into today's world of red carpet events and what the future of couture might look like. In the exhibition there are historic and current designs on display from Swedish and international designers (like Balmain and Balenciaga) as well as pieces designed by students of the Swedish school Beckmans College of Design.
Many of the pieces on display have been worn by famous Swedish women, from historic figures like Selma Lagerlöf to our royal family to Oscar-winning actress Alicia Vikander, and worn at major international events like the Academy Awards or Nobel Prize ceremonies. Many of the pieces are on loan from major fashion houses, private collections and the Swedish and Danish royal houses.
On the walls of the exhibition are images, taken from various magazines and other media, showing the above mentioned women wearing the creations and said events. This helps bring the dresses to life. What I particularly liked about this exhibition is that you are able to get close to these fantastic creations so that you can really see the intricate work with beading, boning and structure that goes into making these handcrafted pieces.
3 of the student creations
11 students from Beckmans College of Design here in Stockholm, under the guidance of designer Pär Engsheden, each designed a piece for the exhibition. Due to a generous donation, they were able to work with exclusive materials and design their pieces following the rules of haute couture. They were each given a theme to work from as a starting point... Pioneers/Strong women, Celebrity/Media and Sustainability/Simplicity.
The easiest way to get to Sven-Harrys Konstmuseum from the Rival Hotel is to take the subway (green line) from nearby Slussen. The museum is located just in between the stations Odenplan and St Eriksplan, the Vasa Park. The building that houses the museum is faux gold plated and hard to miss from the park! Keep in mind that the museum is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays! Click here to see other current art exhibitions in Stockholm.
Vasa park with museum on the left (note gold color)

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