Second Floor by Sam Taylor-Johnson at Saatchi Gallery

For a lot of fashion history buffs out there time travel is one of those wildest of dreams that we’d all love to become a reality. At the Saatchi Gallery in just over a month’s time, it is becoming a reality, to some kind of a degree as British Turner Prize nominated filmmaker and visual artist Sam Taylor-Johnson will present Second Floor, a time-capsule photographic exhibition spotlighting the private apartment of Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel.

The show is a series of 45 photographs, the intimate study captures the private rooms of Mademoiselle Chanel at 31 Rue Cambon in Paris, detailing the ornate furnishings treasured by Coco herself, from numbers and patterns to the spectrum of colours and even the emblematic animals that inspired the designer to end all designers.

Second floor

The unspoiled interiors that clearly mirror Chanel’s iconic design principles result in the ultimate insider glimpse into her private world, decorated with crystal balls and of course, a pack of majestic and symbolic gilded lions, representative of her astrological sign, Leo. The opulent residence is said to carry a somewhat chilling other-worldly air, Taylor-Johnson exclaiming that “shooting that Coco Chanel’s apartment was an unexpectedly absorbing experience”,  who believes that “her spirit and soul still inhabits the second floor”.

The unseen imagery that unveils the architectural testament to Chanel’s modern methods will be also on display in the Saatchi gallery and will be accompanied by a book also entitled Second Floor, as well as special limited edition box set of ten prints chosen by the acclaimed artist. Sure to be one of this summer’s shortest and sweetest exhibitions, you can’t afford to miss out on the next best thing to stopping off at Coco’s place for a brief house call some 80 years ago.

by Liam Feltham

Images courtesy of Chanel

The exhitibition is at the Saatchi Gallery, Duke Of York’s HQ, King’s Rd, London SW3 4RY
from September 12 – 22

Tel: 020 7811 3070


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