The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Wednesday, September 29, 2021


Leïla Menchari, who turned store windows into art, dies at 93
A display at an exhibition devoted to Leïla Menchari, at the Grand Palais in Paris. A longtime Hermès window dresser, she created fantastical worlds that held the gaze of passers-by. She died of the novel coronavirus. She was 93. Guillaume de Laubier via The New York Times.

by Vanessa Friedman



NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- For more than a half-century, Leïla Menchari transformed the windows of the Hermès flagship store in Paris into exotic worlds that allowed any passerby, even for just a minute, free access to the fantasies of a luxury brand.

She built enormous winged feet and spinning meteorites and embedded a sparkling Pegasus within a jeweled geode. She brought in artists to lend their visions to the displays. In the process she elevated the store window into an art form unto itself.

Her windows at 42 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, the store’s address, became so famous that the Grand Palais in Paris in 2017 held an exhibit devoted to her work, “Hermès Takes Flight: The Worlds of Leïla Menchari.”

“Hermès wouldn’t be Hermès without Leïla,” Axel Dumas, the chief executive of the luxury house, said at the opening of the exhibit.

The filmmaker Josée Dayan made a documentary about her, and the French novelist Michel Tournier christened her “The Queen of Enchantment.”

Menchari died in Paris on Saturday She was 93. The cause was the novel coronavirus, her friend Carla Sozzani said.

“She taught us to look at the world through the prism of color,” said Pierre-Alexis Dumas, the artistic director of Hermès and a cousin of Axel. “She was a storyteller without equal.”

Menchari was born in September 1927 in Tunis to a family of wealthy landowners; her father was a lawyer, and her mother a court clerk and women’s rights activist. Menchari was the first woman admitted to the Beaux-Arts institute in Tunis. She also studied at the Beaux-Arts school in Paris, where she created theater sets that became a template for her windows.

She briefly modeled for the designer Guy Laroche before joining the decoration team at Hermès in 1961. She was appointed director of window displays and, in 1978, of the silk colors committee, which determines the palette for each season of the brand’s scarves.

She was also instrumental in bringing such Tunisian fashion talents as the designer Azzedine Alaïa to France.

She retired in 2013.

“When designing a scene, there must always be some mystery, because mystery is a springboard to dreams,” Menchari told Vogue Arabia in an interview in 2017. “Mystery is an invitation to fill in the gaps left by the imagination.”

© 2020 The New York Times Company










Today's News

April 8, 2020

With museums empty, security experts hope thieves stay home, too

Lessons from the plagues, painted for Passover

Beatles Shea Stadium poster sets world record to lead Heritage Auctions' Entertainment Auction beyond $1.6 million

John Prine, revered American folk songwriter, dies of coronavirus complications

David Nolan Gallery presents "The State of Play," an exhibition of new works by Jorinde Voigt

Sergio Rossi, Italian shoemaker and ready-to-wear ally, dies at 84

Christie's announces Jewels Online Sale, features a broad selection of iconic designs by renowned jewelers

Leïla Menchari, who turned store windows into art, dies at 93

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's International Center for the Arts of the Americas launches expanded, enhanced website

Dr. Claudia Perren appointed as the new director of FNHW Academy of Art and Design in Basel

Excuse my French: Franglais rappers raise hackles in Quebec

James Drury, taciturn star of 'The Virginian,' dies at 85

New Head of Collections invites you to help document COVID-19 in the Evergreen State

Casula Powerhouse goes digital with free online programming

Harvard University Graduate School of Design shortlists three architects for 2020 Wheelwright Prize

The Museum of Neon Art announces the appointment of Corrie Siegel as Executive Director

Cranbrook names new Photography and Painting Artists-in-Residence

Italian tenor Bocelli to sing on Easter from empty Milan Cathedral

Phillips appoints Elie Massaoutis as Head of Design, France

World's top animation festival moves online over virus

Sam Fox School announces 2020 Stone & DeGuire Contemporary Art Awards

The Baltimore Museum of Art expands digital resources for art experiences at home

Daylight Books publishes 'Diane Durant: Stories'

Which Type Of Paint Is Best?

Why Oil Painting Is A Wonderful Hobby

Why You Should Buy Art Directly From The Artist

Useful Tips for Buying the Readymade Curtains

How To Get More Views On YouTube

What Is A Nebuliser?




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful