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backside fashion behind exhibition paris palais galliera
Backside/Fashion from Behind© ESTATE OF JEANLOUP SIEFF

New exhibition ‘Backside’ celebrates fashion from behind

Opening today at Paris’s Palais Galliera, the exhibit explores the industry’s complicated relationship with seeing garments from the back

Often, unless you’re lucky enough to attend in person, it’s unlikely you’ll ever get a proper 360° view of looks coming down the runway. To challenge this notion, a new exhibition opening today at the Palais Galliera in Paris is celebrating the details on the backs of some of fashion’s most famous designs. 

Entitled Backside/Fashion from Behind (lol), the exhibition is curated by Alexandre Samson. “I wanted to deal with backs both in the anatomical and psychological sense, the back is the only part of our body that we can’t see and that others actually have a better view of,” he explains to WWD. “Many fashion designers have played around that idea, focusing on its vulnerability. We wanted people to really change the way they look at things.”

Some of the garments on display include Rick OwensSS16 human backpack dresses and the famous red gingham Comme des Garçons SS97 ‘Lumps and Bumps’ dress. Elsewhere, works from the likes of Raf Simons, Yves Saint Laurent, Azzedine Alaïa, Thierry Mugler, and more appear. 

The most infamous piece on display, however, would have to be that Zara parka jacket, infamously worn by Melania Trump to a child detention centre reading: ‘I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?’.

Alongside the exhibition, a book featuring a foreword by Yohji Yamamoto will also available for visitors to buy. 

Backside/Fashion from Behind is open from July 5 to November 17, at Palais Galleria’s Musée Bourdelle – 18, rue Antoine Bourdelle, 75015 Paris.