The National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) is getting ready once again to welcome a new ‘Hermès Heritage’ exhibition like no other. After “Once Upon a Bag” in 2022, this year we get to explore the history and heritage of the House with a series of objects that highlight iconic themes, colors and motifs from Hermès’ origins as a harness-maker and saddler, until today. Taking place from March 4 till April 1, 2023, “Harnessing the Roots” focuses on harnesses and their metamorphoses, thus highlighting the fact that everything changes at Hermès to cater to the evolving lifestyles and with them the desires and needs of its customers – every mechanism, shape, type of attachment, suspension, or clasp, initially conceived to equip a saddle or harness, is transmitted and transformed, playing a part in the design of a whole new object.
Bruno Gaudichon, curator of “Harnessing the Roots”, along with the scenographer Laurence Fontaine, decided to arrange the objects by way of a thematic narrative, rather than chronological, in order to reveal the links and dialogue that have always existed between the objects and to communicate the creative logic of the exhibition three-dimensionally. The result was 5 themes: Brides de Gala, The Horse and its Tack, The Saddle, Buckled Up, and Ties and Straps.
As for the sources, from which the creations highlighted in the exhibition came from, they were the Émile Hermès collection, the House’s Conservatory of Creations, and contemporary fashion, lifestyle and accessories collections. Complemented by documentary archives and a film from 1962 in which Robert Dumas, heir and Director of Hermès from 1951 to 1978, explains the art of saddle making, these marvels are only the beginning of a story in which an intertwining of materials, stories and techniques reveals the fantasy and magic of Hermès.