viktorrolfexhibition.jpg

If the concept of 'fashion as art' floats your boat, the Barbican's new exhibition is definitely one to put in the diary. We got an early peek at The House of Viktor & Rolf today (it opens to the public tomorrow) and could easily have spent hours watching the shows and admiring the clothing.

Taking an historic look back at the work of the Dutch fashion house, the centrepiece of the collection is a huge 'dolls house' three floors high, filled with slightly disturbing foot-high dolls dressed in miniature versions of the designers' most famous designs...

The effect is a bit 'Blythe does Couture', but it works brilliantly at showcasing the conceptual work of the quirky duo. Surrounding the main hall are rooms showcasing full-sized pieces from each collection...also on doll-faced mannequins. Each room is an art installation all by itself, from the 'blue screen' ensembles that had images projected onto them during the original catwalk show to the famous 'Russian Doll' collection, where model Maggie Rizer was dressed up in layers of heavy couture until she was supporting 70 kilos of hessian, sparkle and embellishment.

If you can't get to London to see the exhibition in person, the accompanying coffee table book is available for £23.10 on Amazon (a huge saving on the £35 retail price). Tickets to the exhibition are £8 / £6 concessions.