Ever since I heard that British Vogue has a special exhibition showcasing the photography “that has been commissioned by the magazine since 1916”, I knew I had to go. Sure, they had that 10 minute guided tour on youtube but it still doesn’t compare to the real experience. I’m so pleased that I got the chance to really observe the most beautiful and influential work at one of the most respected fashion magazines.
Each decade was split into different rooms, making it effective and easier for us to see, compare and reflect about each part. It’s no secret that my favourite decade style-wise will always be the 50s (I even have a separate Pinterest board for it) and I know I spent way too much time in that section but there’s something so special and significant about that particular decade for me. It was very fascinating and enlightening to see the difference between the early decades for British Vogue, versus the 2000s/present time, with our FCP course leader commenting that there is a very clear divide. I adore the illustrations and sophisticated style of the 1916s-1950s and you have the latest versions of Vogue which focuses more on celebrities/models/it girls. Stand-out photographers include Norman Parkinson (blog post about him coming soon), Cecil Beaton, Adolf de Meyer and of course Tim Walker and Paolo Roversi (remember my post about his fantastic photographs?). I also loved the magazine timeline!
Out of all the exhibitions I’ve ever went to, this has got to be one of the best. I would highly recommend it if you get the chance to go to London! It makes for a fantastic day out with friends especially as it’s so close to the tube (Leicester Square) and near lots of restaurants, cinemas and theatres!
It was a shame that we weren’t allowed to take photographs but I did manage to write down a few notes and so the only photos I have are of the exterior – it’s so pretty though! I’ve never been to the National Portrait Gallery and wouldn’t mind going again.
For more information regarding the exhibition or to buy tickets, visit the National Portrait Gallery website.
Vogue 100: A Century of Style will showcase the remarkable range of photography that has been commissioned by British Vogue since it was founded in 1916, with over 280 prints from the Condé Nast archive and international collections being shown together for the first time to tell the story of one of the most influential fashion magazines in the world.