Taking place at the galleries at 6 Burlington Gardens in west London, the exhibition presents leather items from Hermès’ past, as well as some of its latest creations.
Craftspeople from the Hermès workshops in Paris are present at the exhibition, delivering live demonstrations for visitors of the art of leather making.
Amongst the creations on display are pieces commissioned by the late Duke of Windsor for his Duchess, Wallis Simpson, including a black patent calfskin wheel barrow with brass handles.
Other notable exhibits include a Sac a Depeche briefcase, created from carefully preserved leather rescued from a brigantine ship, the Metta Catharina, which sank in 1786. The wreck was discovered in 1973 by an archaeological diving club, complete with surviving leather.
Thierry Outin, Managing Director of Hermes, said: “‘Leather Forever’ will be a poetic, light-hearted and quirky evocation of the creative way we think and work at Hermès, celebrating not only the brand’s 175 year heritage, but perhaps most prominently, its experience of working with leather.
“The show will be the brand’s ode to the enduring material and a demonstration of Hermès’s passion for leather.”
To celebrate the exhibition, Hermès has also created four one-off handbags that are currently for sale at an online auction held by Christie’s, with all proceeds being donated to the Royal Academy of Arts. The auction runs until 31st May.