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MANOLO BLAHNIK
THE ART OF SHOES

Project Brief

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Manolo Blahnik is one of the world’s premiere shoe designers, and the Bata Shoe Museum was fortunate enough to be the last stop on Blahnik’s show tour. Arc & Co. Design Collective were approached by Bata Show Museum to design the exhibit space for this one-of-a-kind Manolo Blahnik show.

 

The task at hand was to conceptualize an exhibit space that would highlight the vast collection of Manolo designs, while marrying the classic French nature of Manolo with the modernity of forward-thinking that propelled Manolo to an elite status.

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Exhibit Design, Exhibit Fabrication Drawings, Exhibit Design Fabrication Project Management, Exhibit Graphic Design

Design Solution

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Inspired by Post-Neo-Classic interior style, Arc & Co. extracted from an era of design that would infuse an old European beauty to the space. Taking freedom to play with combining modern elements and elements found in Post-Neo-Classic design, an elevated realization was developed led to accurately portray Manolo’s brand, and subsequently his shoes. Although the materials were conventional, we subverted expectations by fabricating them to be more modern, taking on geometric shapes. The treatment of the walls and the casings sprinkled throughout the space highlight this juxtaposition. A modern black base – painted with a matte/rubbery finish – would be met with the classic glass top to openly show off Manolo’s shoes. The walls, designed to contrast the modernity of the casings, would feature crown molding and be painted with a high-gloss finish. High-end elegance was inherently communicated through the space. Manolo himself attended the show opening, and media coverage along with a plethora of audiences acclaimed the exhibit.  

Schematics

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Project Statistics

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EXHIBITION LOCATION:

Bata Shoe Museum (Toronto, Canada)

SQUARE FOOTAGE:

3000 sq. ft.

ARTIFACT COUNT:

200 + shoes

100 + sketches and paintings

EXHIBITION DURATION:

May 16, 2018 - January 6, 2019

CURATION:

Cristina Carillo de Albornoz

FABRICATION:

Expographique

INTERNATIONAL TOUR:

Milan, Italy (Palazzo Morando)

St. Petersburg, Russia (Hermitage Museum)

Prague, Czech Republic (Kampa Museum)

Madrid, Spain (Museo Nacional de Artes Decorativas)

EXHIBIT DESIGN

CASE STUDIES

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