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Almost a decade after the first two showcases in London and Hong Kong, influential Milan-based fashion house Prada has picked Shanghai as the location to present its immersive Pradasphere II exhibition. Staged at the city’s riverside Start Museum, the show traces the history and culture of Prada from its origins in 1913 to the present day, told through a selection of stories curated by co-creative directors Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons. More than 400 artefacts — physical and digital — are on display, drawn from the fashion archive as well as decades-long engagements across art, architecture, culture, and sport. Building on the success of the first iteration in 2014, this exhibition follows the groundbreaking trajectory of Prada, exploring the indelible impact of its vision on luxury, beauty, and fashion as an intellectual act. Staged as a lush magazzino, Italian for ‘warehouse’, the show is a cross-section of the multivalent Prada universe.

Created in collaboration with 2×4, a design consultancy based in New York City and Beijing, the show juxtaposes the rough and refined: constructed of industrial warehouse shelving lined with precious pink silk velvet. Together, the exhibition puts forward a way of thinking about luxury: fashion intersects with life — history, art, sport, architecture, and sound. The green velvet entrance is designed to evoke the foundations of the Prada style, featuring an Andreas Gursky photograph which depicts an emblematic wall from one of the brand’s early retail stores. The main magazzino corridor displays nearly 200 looks, both women’s and men’s, from the first collection to the current day, some of which have not been seen for over three decades. These looks have been carefully chosen by Simons, super-fan from the outside turned insider and co-creator. A number of special rooms designed to evoke uniquely Prada spaces branch off from the magazzino. These rooms serve as focal points to go deeper into various episodes of this multi-dimensional world (on through Jan 21).

Designed by 2×4
Images © Prada


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