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If I Where in London Today

I would be making plans to attend the Barbara Hulanicki exhibit

Here's the detail courtesy of Vogue UK:

DON'T be surprised to have to fight your way through the fashion-loving crowds next week when Barbara Hulanicki, the famous founder of Biba, holds her first London exhibition - a series of illustrations entitledThe Art of Barbara Hulanicki at The Coningsby Gallery in London.

"Illustration is so great. I was a fashion illustrator when I left college – it seemed to be a faster way of getting into fashion," explains Hulanicki who, for the last fifteen years has been successfully working her design magic on the interiors of Miami's chicest hotels as well as collaborating with the V&A on various design projects. "But this (illustration) is so incredible and a luxury, it's so instant. Drawing is making a comeback."

With the images only on show for six days, are there plans for further exhibitions? "I never plan anything, things usually happen," she tells us. And with that in mind, we're looking forward to seeing what "happens" next.

The Art of Barbara Hulanicki runs from March 3 to 8 with a private view on March 4. The illustrations will be available to buy. For further information, visit www.coningsbygallery.com. (February 26 2008, AM)

Jessica Bumpus

That picture is of Barbara herself. How great would it be to sit down and ask her about the great hey-days of Biba back n the day? Where does a young girl find the proverbial 'balls' to start a clothing line with nothing more than some homemade 'catalog's'? I wonder if she was devastated when she realized her little mini-empire she had created from nothing was about to collapse? To walk into the Big Biba store and know it was yours? You know we look at fashion as an independent entity and forget that every great label out there started from one person somewhere back in it's history. One person who decided to throw caution to the wind and just put it out there to the world. We tend to forget that every vintage Biba dress you are lucky enough to own is a piece of that women you see in the picture.

If I where in London and attended the exhibit, I would stand in front of one of her illustrations, close my eyes and pretend that I had the chance to ask her what it was really like to start a phenomenon.

To essentially BE that phenomenon .....because Barabara is Biba.


Guerreira said...

Hey, great tip!!! I will check it out and tell you about it!

Shrimpton Couture said...


Ok so now I am jealous but if you do go please email me your thoughts and a picture even and I will put you on as a guest blogger! I know everyone would love a first hand account!

emmapeelpants said...

Well I have met her, but I didn't get the chance to ask all those questions. I just about got out 'I've just been reading your autobiography and it was so inspiring', to which the great lady asked where on earth I found a copy and moved onto someone else...

Yeah....sometimes you just have to take these crumbs and relish them. ;)

I had just heard her talk anyway, and she was tactful but clearly upset about the failure and subsequent relaunches. As for the balls, well I think it was just the zeitgeist of the time. There was the freedom and energy to get these things done and people were lapping it up. It couldn't happen now, not without a major change in the world.

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