Exhibition Opening on Saturday, 27 May 2017

Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion

Discover how Cristóbal Balenciaga's exquisite craftsmanship and innovative designs shaped modern fashion

£12.00Get tickets
  • Opening on Saturday, 27 May 2017
  • Daily: 10.00 – 17.30 Last entry 16.15 Friday: 10.00 – 21.30 Last entry 20.15
  • Room 40
  • Tickets cost £12.00

    Concessions apply.
    Advance booking is recommended.
    Members do not need to book.

This exhibition examines the work and legacy of influential Spanish couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga, with over 100 pieces crafted by ‘the master’ of couture, his protégées and contemporary fashion designers working in the same innovative tradition.

Sponsored by

As a brand with a long history of supporting the fashion industry, American Express is proud to partner with the V&A. Our Card Members are increasingly passionate about art and design, so we're delighted to share this unique exhibition with them and other visitors of the V&A. We hope you enjoy this exquisite collection of work by Cristóbal Balenciaga and the contemporary designers inspired by him as much we do.

Exhibition Highlights

Silk taffeta evening dress 2560
Silk taffeta evening dress, Cristóbal Balenciaga, 1955, Paris, France. Museum no. T.427-1967. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Balenciaga at work 2560
Cristóbal Balenciaga at work, 1968, Paris, France. Photograph by Henri Cartier-Bresson. © Henri Cartier-Bresson/Magnum Photos

Silk%20hat balenciaga 2560
Spiral silk hat, Balenciaga for Eisa, 1962, Spain. Museum no. T.146-1998. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Oscar de la renta 2560
Oscar de la Renta, Spring Summer 2015 ready-to-wear, look 37. © Catwalking.com

Evening mini paco rabanne
Evening mini-dress, Paco Rabanne, 1967. Museum no. T.165:1 to 3-1983. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Elise daniels with street performers 2560
Elise Daniels with street performers, suit by Balenciaga, Le Marais, Paris, August 1948. Photograph by Richard Avedon. © The Richard Avedon Foundation

Bal envelope dress
Alberta Tiburzi in 'envelope' dress by Cristóbal Balenciaga. Photograph by Hiro Wakabayashi for Harper's Bazaar, June 1967. © Hiro 1967

Xray fuchsia
X-ray photograph of silk taffeta evening dress by Cristóbal Balenciaga, 1955, Paris, France. X-ray by Nick Veasey, 2016. © Nick Veasey

Wild silk dress balenciaga 2560
Wild silk evening dress (detail), Cristóbal Balenciaga with embroidery by Lesage, 1960 – 2, Paris, France. Museum no. T.27-1974. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

More to Do


Exhibition shop



This absorbing book, with breath-taking illustrations, examines Balenciaga’s design and business practice.

£19.99 Buy
Cristobal Balenciaga: The Work of the Master

Cristobal Balenciaga: The Work of the Master

In 1984 Diana Vreeland, the editor-in-chief of Vogue, called him ‘the greatest dressmaker who has ever lived’, and this beautiful book reveals how his early life and family background informed his work.

£30.00 Buy
Balenciaga suit, fashion illustration

Balenciaga suit, fashion illustration

This drawing was used for illustration in The Lady magazine in 1953 and 1954.

£80.00 Buy
Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion
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